november 2008

project 03-08

Underground Distribution System Design Guide

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Underground Distribution System Design Guide
Prepared by Edward S. Thomas, PE Utility Electrical Consultants, PC 620 N.West St., Suite 103 Raleigh, NC 27603-5938 and Bill Dorsett Booth & Associates, Inc. 1011 Schaub Drive Raleigh, NC 27606 for Cooperative Research Network National Rural Electric Cooperative Association 4301 Wilson Boulevard Arlington, Virginia 22203-1860

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association
The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), founded in 1942, is the national service organization supporting more than 900 electric cooperatives and public power districts in 47 states. Electric cooperatives own and operate more than 42 percent of the distribution lines in the nation and provide power to 40 million people (12 percent of the population).

© Underground Distribution System Design Guide
Copyright © 2008, by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited without prior written approval of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, except that reasonable portions may be reproduced or quoted as part of a review or other story about this publication.

Legal Notice
This work contains findings that are general in nature. Readers are reminded to perform due diligence in applying these findings to their specific needs, as it is not possible for NRECA to have sufficient understanding of any specific situation to ensure applicability of the findings in all cases. Neither the authors nor NRECA assume liability for how readers may use, interpret, or apply the information, analysis, templates, and guidance herein or with respect to the use of, or damages resulting from the use of, any information, apparatus, method, or process contained herein. In addition, the authors and NRECA make no warranty or representation that the use of these contents does not infringe on privately held rights. This work product constitutes the intellectual property of NRECA and its suppliers, as the case may be, and contains Confidential Information. As such, this work product must be handled in accordance with the CRN Policy Statement on Confidential Information.


Edward S. Thomas, PE Utility Electrical Consultants, PC 620 N.West St., Suite 103 Raleigh, NC 27603-5938 Phone: 919.821.1410 Fax: 919.821.2417

Bill Dorsett Booth & Associates, Inc. 1011 Schaub Drive Raleigh, NC 27606 Phone: 919.851.8770 Fax: 919.859.5918

Contents – iii

con t e n t s
Section 1 Design of an Underground Distribution System System Components Types of UD Systems Reliability of UD Systems Design Considerations for System Operation and Maintenance Future Upgrades and Replacements Economic Comparison of System Configurations UD Loss Economics Steps for Layout of a UD System Summary and Recommendations Cable Selection Typical Cable Configuration Conductor Size Designations Conductor Materials and Configuration Cable Insulation Materials Insulation Fabrication Conductor Shields and Insulation Shields Cable Specification and Purchasing Cable Acceptance Summary and Recommendations Underground System Sectionalizing General Sectionalizing Philosophy Overcurrent Protection of Cable System Effect of Inrush Current on Sectionalizing Devices Selection of Underground Sectionalizing Equipment Faulted-Circuit Indicators Summary and Recommendations Equipment Loading Primary Cable Ampacity Pad-Mounted Transformer Sizing Summary and Recommendations Grounding and Surge Protection Cable Grounding System Function Factors Affecting Cable Grounding System Performance Counterpoise Application for Insulated Jacketed Cable System Ground Resistance Measurement and Calculation Underground System Surge Protection Summary and Recommendations 1 2 6 14 17 19 20 32 38 50 51 51 53 53 57 60 64 74 77 77 79 79 88 96 100 105 118 121 121 144 163 165 166 177 188 192 207 236

Section 2

Section 3

Section 4

Section 5

i v – C o n t en t s

c o n te n t s
Section 6 Ferroresonance Allowable Overvoltages During Ferroresonance Distribution Transformer Connections Qualitative Description of Ferroresonance Ferroresonance When Switching at the Primary Terminals of Overhead and Underground Transformer Banks Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Delta or Ungrounded-Wye Connected Primary Windings Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Winding and Five-Legged Core Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings and Triplex Construction Ferroresonance in Underground Feeders Having More Than One Transformer Summary of Techniques for Preventing Ferroresonance in Underground Systems Summary and Recommendations References Cathodic Protection Requirements Special Note Introduction What to Protect Where to Protect Types of Cathodic Protection Systems Amount of Cathodic Protection Cathodic Protection Design with Galvanic Anodes Cathodic Protection Installation and Follow-Up Calculation of Resistence to Ground Summary and Recommendations Direct-Buried System Design Trench Construction Considerations Trench Design Components Trench Layout/Routing Considerations Depth of Burial Joint-Occupancy Trenches Summary and Recommendations Conduit System Design Conduit System Design Cable Pulling Summary and Recommendations 239 240 241 242 252 254 260 266 270 273 276 279 281 281 281 282 282 285 286 287 294 296 297 299 299 300 303 304 307 309 311 311 332 341

Section 7

Section 8

Section 9

Contents – v

con t e n t s
Section 10 Joints, Elbows, and Terminations Joints, Elbows, and Terminations for 200-Ampere Primary Circuits Joints, Elbows, and Terminations for 600-Ampere Primary Circuits Joints, and Terminations for Secondary Circuits Summary and Recommendations Cable Testing Reasons for and Benefits of Cable Testing by the User Primary Cable Tests by the User Secondary Cable Tests by the User Tests by the Cable Manufacturer Summary and Recommendations Calculations for Reliability Studies Reliability Index Acceptability Criteria Calculation of Reliability Importance of Sectionalizing Transformer and Secondary Voltage Drop Voltage Flicker Sample Specification UGC2 for 600-Volt Secondary Underground Power Cable Scope General Specifications Referenced Specifications Conductor Insulation Tests Miscellaneous Markings Multiconductor Cable Assemblies Checklist for Information Requirements Project Information Checklist 343 344 353 355 357 359 359 359 369 370 372 373 373 374 374 375 377 385

Section 11

Appendix A

Appendix B

Appendix C

389 389 390 390 391 391 392 393 393 393 395 395

Appendix D

v i – C o n t en t s

c o n t e nt s
Appendix E Sample Specification for 15-, 25-, and 35-kV Primary Underground Medium Voltage Concentric Neutral Cable (Specification UGC1) Purpose General Specifications Referenced Specifications Conductor Conductor Shield (Stress Control Layer) Insulation Insulation Shielding Concentric Neutral Conductor Overall Outer Jacket Dimensional Tolerances Tests Miscellaneous Allowable Short Circuit Currents for Solid Dielectric Insulated Cables Ampacity Tables Industry Specifications Component Manufacturers Cable-Pulling Examples

397 397 397 398 399 400 400 400 401 401 402 402 403 405 415 425 427 431 435

Appendix F Appendix G Appendix H Appendix I Appendix J Abbreviations

Illust r a ti o n s – v i i

illustra t i o ns
FIGURE 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 1.28 1.29 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 2.10 UD System Components Schematics for Different Types of Switchgear Flat Pad for Equipment Mounting Ground Sleeve Box Pad for Equipment Mounting Underground Substation Circuit Exit Radial Main Feeder Radial Main Feeder with Faulted Cable Section Open-Loop Feeder Open-Loop Feeder with Faulted Cable Section Radial Feeder Open-Loop Feeder in Shopping Center Multiple-Loop System Area Lighting System Loop-Feed Design of UD System Under Normal Conditions Loop-Feed Design of UD System with Damaged Cable Section Open-Loop System, 37-Lot Subdivision Open-Loop System, Single Residential Consumer Single-Phase Sub-Feeder Three-Phase Sub-Feeder Front Property Placement Back Property Placement Methods for Providing Secondary Service Road Crossing to Feed Secondary Pedestal Service and Transformer Layout for 75-Lot Subdivision Primary Cable Layout for 75-Lot Subdivision Minimum Required Working Space Sample Easement Staking Sheet for Service to a Commercial Consumer Jacketed Concentric Neutral Cable Bare Concentric Neutral Cable Medium-Voltage Power Cable with Tape Shield and L.C. Shield Concentric Lay Strand Options Standard Strand Arrangements for Multilayer Conductors Comparative Hot Creep vs. Temperatures for Cable Insulation Materials General Layout of a Cable Extrusion Line Typical Extrusion Methods Capacitive and Dielectric Loss Current Flow in Insulation Shield Cable Identification Markings PAGE 2 3 5 5 5 6 7 8 9 9 10 11 11 12 16 16 21 22 24 25 28 28 31 40 40 42 43 47 49 52 52 52 56 56 60 62 63 66 73

14 3.4 3.13 3.4 4.8 4.11 4.6 4.10 3.17 3.2 3. Moisture Content for Various Soil Types Thermal Resistivity of Soil at Various Locations Effect of Depth on Soil Temperatures as Influenced by Seasonal Temperature Variations Trefoil or Triangular Cable Configuration Flat Conductor Configuration.15 3.9 4.8 3. Typical Dead-Front.12 4.18 3. Pad-Mounted Transformer Actual Load Cycle and Equivalent Load Cycle Thermal Equivalent Load Cycle Case Temperature Measurement Location—Pad-Mounted Distribution Transformer Relationship Among NEMA Starting Code Letters.15 4.22 4.7 4. and Transformer kVA per Motor HP for Transformer Thermal Considerations Maximum Motor Starts per Hour for Transformer Mechanical Considerations PAGE 82 82 86 88 90 104 107 107 108 109 110 111 111 112 112 113 114 114 115 116 116 117 4.10 4.5 3.20 3.16 124 125 127 127 128 130 130 132 136 423 145 147 147 159 160 162 . 1/C 35-kV Aluminum Power Cables in Triplexed Formation Relationship Between Load Factor and Loss Factor Per Unit Thermal Resistivity vs.11 3.19 3.12 3.2 4.3 3.5 4.1 3. Starts per Hour.1 Symmetrical Current Asymmetrical Short-Circuit Current Sample Distribution Circuit with Typical Locations of Sectionalizing Devices Show Cross Section of Cable Showing Components Subject to Through-Fault Damage Example of 70-Ampere.14 4. Maintained Spacing Direct-Buried Duct Bank Installation Using Rigid Nonmetallic Conduit Single-Phase U-Guard Installation with Vented Base Three-Phase Cable Installation Configurations 138. Single-Phase.9 3.21 3.7 3.v i i i – Il l u st r a t i o n s i l l us t r a tions FIGURE 3.16 3.13 4.6 3. Type “L” Recloser Curves for Cable Protection Current Limiting Fuses for Padmounted Switching Cabinets Inrush Current Resulting from Operation of Three-Phase Recloser Inrush Current Resulting from Operation of Single-Phase Recloser Trip Response for Peak-Current-Sensitive Units Trip Response for 450A and 800A FCIs Trip-Set Characteristics for Adaptive-Trip FCI FCI Placement on Overhead Feeder with Underground Segment FCI Placement on Three-Phase Underground Feeder FCI Placement for Single-Phase Open Loop FCI Placement for Underground Subdivision with Three-Phase Source Current-Reset FCI Low-Voltage-Reset FCI High-Voltage-Reset FCI Time-Reset FCI Correct Placement of FCI Sensor Incorrect Placement of FCI Sensor Reset FCI Ratio of Shield Loss to Conductor DC Loss at 90°C as a Function of Shield Resistance.3 4.

12 5. Underground Primary Cable Counterpoise 60-Hz Resistance Variation with Length and Different Soil Resistivities Effect of Length on Transient Surge Impedance of Counterpoise Counterpoise Application to Reduce Jacket Voltage Earth Resistance Correct Ground Resistance Test Setup Incorrect Ground Resistance Test Setup Clamp-On Ground Resistance Tester Circuit Diagram for Multigrounded System Ground Resistance Test Setup for Clamp-On Tester Setup for Soil Resistivity Test Effects of Moisture on Soil Resistivity Effects of Salt Content on Resistivity in Soil Containing 30 Percent Moisture Coefficient K1 for Ground Resistance Calculations Grouping of Four Ground Rods with 16-Foot Spacing Grouping of Four Ground Rods with 5-Foot Spacing Types of Arresters and Their Construction Comparison of Nonlinear Characteristics of SiC and MOV Valve Elements Effect of Fast Rise Times on IR Discharge Series.Illus t r at i o n s – i x illustra t i o ns FIGURE 5.and Shunt-Gapped MOV Distribution Arresters PAGE 169 171 171 173 173 174 175 175 178 180 181 182 183 183 185 185 186 187 187 188 189 190 193 193 193 195 195 195 196 198 198 201 203 203 208 209 210 210 .37 5.30 5.21.10 5. 5.16 5.5 5.17 5.25 5.36 5.38 Typical Distribution Transformer Core Form Design and Neutral Grounding Circuit Variation of Surge Impedance with Surge Current for Various Values of 60-Cycle Resistance Surge Characteristics of Various Ground Rods Arrester Lead Length for Two Riser Pole Installations Three-Phase Installation Showing Optimum Riser Pole Arrester Lead Connections Typical Primary and Secondary Underground Installation Schematic Diagram Showing Surge Current Paths After Lightning Arrester Discharge Maximum Jacket Voltage (Neutral to Ground) Produced by Lightning Current Surge in Ground Rod BCN Cable Riser Pole Installation Surge Arrester Discharge Paths Ground Rod Being Driven by Hydraulic Tool Resistance of Vertical Ground Rods as a Function of Length and Diameter Resistance of Multiple Ground Rods Installation of Three Rods for a Riser Pole Ground Installation of Four Rods for a Riser Pole Ground Grounding Assembly for Pad-Mounted Single-Phase Transformers Grounding Grid for Pad-Mounted Equipment Installation Installation of JCN Connection in Above-Grade Pedestal Grounding Assembly for JCN Underground Primary Cable Intermediate Grounding Assembly.7 5.9 5.4 5.13 5.15 5.19 5.3 5.11 5.20 5.6 5.23 5.8 5.24 5.28 5.29 5.33 5.26 5.2 5.27 5.14 5.1 5.18 5.34 5.32 5.22 5.35 5.31 5.

1 6.57 5.2 6.41 5.46 5.8 6.3 6.x – Il lu s t ra t io n s i l l us t r a tions FIGURE 5.4 6.39 5.9 6.52 5.49 5.60 5.5 Feet Zero Arrester Lead Length Representation of Distributed Parameter Distribution Line Change in Surge Impedance at a Junction Point—Effect on Traveling Voltage Wave Traveling Wave Behavior at Junction Points Terminated with Various Surge Impedances Traveling Waves at a Cable Open-End Point Terminated by an MOV Arrester Arrester Locations Cable-End Arresters at Open Point Arrester Upstream from Open Point (Third Arrester) Two Elbow Arresters and a Feed-Through Elbow Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester Bushing Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester Elbow Arrester on Feed-Through Insert on Transformer Upstream from Open Point Bushing Arrester on Transformer Upstream from Open Point Lateral Tap Cable-End Arrester (Radial Feed Circuit) Tap-Point Arrester Typical Underground Subdivision Loop Feed with Open Point Transformer Connections for Four-Wire Wye and Four-Wire Delta Services Series RLC Circuit with Sinusoidal Excitation Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformer Susceptible to Ferroresonance Conductor Spacings for an Overhead Line on an Eight-Foot Crossarm Equivalent Capacitance Network for an Overhead Multigrounded Neutral Line Cross Section of a Multiwire Concentric Neutral Cable Floating-Wye/Delta Transformer Bank with Fused Cutouts at Primary Terminals Three-Phase Cable-Fed Transformer with a Delta-Connected Primary Winding Voltage and Current Waveforms During Ferroresonance with a 150-kVA Delta Grounded-Wye Bank Five-Legged Wound-Type Core with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings Three-Phase Cable-Fed Transformer with a Grounded-Wye Primary Winding on a Five-Legged Core PAGE 211 212 215 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 227 230 231 231 232 232 232 232 232 232 232 242 243 245 247 247 248 253 255 255 260 262 .53 5.5 6.54 5.43 5.59 5.47 5.61 6.56 5.44 5.7 6.42 5.58 5.51 5.40 5.48 5.55 5.50 5.6 6.45 5.10 6.11 Dead-Front Arrester Elbow Configuration Dead-Front Surge Arresters Temporary 60-Hz Overvoltage Capability Curves—Typical MOV Distribution Arrester Typical Test Current Waveshape—Sinusoidal Wavefront Lightning Rise Time to Peak Arrester Lead Length Equal to Three Feet Arrester Lead Length Equal to 1.

7 7.12 6.15 6.4 9.Illus t r at i o n s – x i illustra t i o ns FIGURE PAGE 6.8 9.6 9.10 7.2 8.3 9.6 7.13 6.11 8.16 6.8 7.3 7.7 9.17 6.4 7.5 7.12 Open-Phase Voltage Waveforms with Five-Legged Core Grounded-Wye Transformers Overhead System Supplying a Cable-Fed Grounded-Wye Transformer on a Five-Legged Core Triplex-Type Wound Core with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings Cable-Fed Triplex-Core Transformer with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings Circuit with “S” Cable Sections and “N” Five-Legged Core Grounded-Wye Primary Transformers Circuit Configuration for Switching Example 6.2 Preferred Location of Duct Lines in Roadways Typical Manhole Configurations Rectangular Manhole Construction Details Rectangular Manhole Installation Details Octagonal Manhole Construction Details Octagonal Manhole Installation Details Cable/Conduit Friction and Pulling Tension Cable Configurations in Conduit Sidewall Bearing Pressure 262 267 269 269 270 271 274 282 283 283 284 284 284 285 287 295 295 295 301 302 305 308 316 319 319 326 326 327 328 329 330 333 334 336 .1 8.14 6.4 9.2 7.1 9.1 7.9 9.11 9.5 9.18 7.2 9.3 8.10 9.2 Single-Line Diagram of a Portion of a UD System Dissimilar Metal Effects Between Buried Metals Connected to the Neutral of an Electric Distribution Line Electric System Map Shaded to Show Corrosive Soil Locations Measurement of Potential to a Copper-Copper Sulfate Half Cell Dissimilar Metal Effects Between Copper and Steel Dissimilar Soil Effects on Buried Copper Wires Measurement of Earth Resistivity with a Four-Terminal Ground Tester Potentials of a Copper-Steel Couple Before and After Connecting a Zinc Anode Equivalent Circuit for a Galvanic Anode Connected to the Electric Neutral Anode Positioning Anode Connector Test Station Connector Typical Trench Warning Tape Cable Route Marker Burial Depth Requirements Joint Trench Use Typical Duct Configurations Typical Duct Line and Manhole Arrangement Typical Arrangements for System in Figure 9.9 7.

6 10.21 10.9 10.15 10.5 10.13 10.19 10.2 B.1 10.4 10.20 10.x i i – Il l u s t r at i o n s i l l us t r a tions FIGURE PAGE 10.1 B.2 10.12 10. Dead-Break Elbows Dead-Break 600-Ampere Elbow Connector and Accessories for Primary Cables Housing Assembly Joint for Secondary Cables Cold-Shrink Joint for Secondary Cables Heat-Shrink Joint for Secondary Cables Sealed Stud Termination for Secondary Cables Bus and Rubber Cover Termination for Secondary Cables Housing and Sleeve Assembly Termination for Secondary Cables Test Setup for the Hot Silicone Oil Test Typical Test Setup for the Stripping Test of the Insulation Shield Typical High-Voltage Proof Tester Showing a Sectionalized Discharge Stick for Grounding the Cable Components Affecting Outage Rate to the Consumer Sectionalized UD Area Distance for Various Conductor Arrangements Permissible Voltage Flicker Limits 344 344 345 346 347 348 348 349 349 351 351 351 352 352 353 354 355 355 355 356 356 356 364 365 368 374 376 381 386 A.2 .11 10.3 10.22 11.10 10.18 10.8 10.16 10.7 10.17 10.3 Voltage Stress Concentration Voltage Stress Distribution in a Typical Premolded Joint Housing Premolded Permanent Straight Joint for Primary Cables Jacket Replacement Assembly (Method C) Premolded Permanent Wye Joint for Primary Cables Dead-Break Elbow for Primary Cables Load-Break Elbow for Primary Cables Typical 200-Ampere Elbow Accessories Heat-Shrink Jacket Seal at Elbow Premolded Indoor Termination (Slip-On Stress Cone) for Primary Cables Premolded Integral Indoor/Outdoor Termination for Primary Cables Premolded Modular Indoor/Outdoor Termination with Separate Skirts for Primary Cables Porcelain Indoor/Outdoor Terminal for Primary Cables Cold-Shrink Indoor/Outdoor Termination for Primary Cables Stick-Operable.14 10.1 11.2 11.1 A.

5 F.8 Aluminum Conductor/Thermoplastic Insulation (PE/HMWPE)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents Based on 75°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 150°C Final Temperature Copper Conductor/Thermoplastic Insulation (PE/HMWPE)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents Based on 75°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 150°C Final Temperature Aluminum Conductor/Thermoset Insulation (TR-XLPE/EPR)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents Based on 90°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 250°C Final Conductor Temperature Copper Conductor/Thermoset Insulation (TR-XLPE/EPR)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents for 90°C Rated Insulation Based on 90°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 250°C Final Conductor Temperature Aluminum Conductor/Thermoplastic Insulation (PE/HMWPE)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents for Conductor to Not Exceed Insulation Emergency Operating Temperature Rating Based on 75°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 90°C Final Conductor Temperature Copper Conductor/Thermoplastic Insulation (PE/HMWPE)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents for Conductor to Not Exceed Insulation Emergency Operating Temperature Rating Based on 75°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 90°C Final Conductor Temperature Aluminum Conductor/Thermoset Insulation (TR-XLPE/EPR)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents for Conductor to Not Exceed Insulation Emergency Operating Temperature Rating Based on 90°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 130°C Final Conductor Temperature Copper Conductor/Thermoset Insulation (TR-XLPE/EPR)— Allowable Short Circuit Currents for Conductor to Not Exceed Insulation Emergency Operating Temperature Rating Based on 90°C Initial Conductor Temperature and 130°C Final Conductor Temperature 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 .6 F.2 F.Illustr a ti o n s – x i ii illustra t i o ns FIGURE PAGE F.4 F.3 F.1 F.7 F.

22 2.5 2. at Various Conductor Temperatures Values of T2. Commercial Consumer Additional Cost per Kilowatt.9 1. °C.6 3.21 1.8 1. °C Values of M for the Limiting Condition Where T2 = 200°C Values of M for the Limiting Condition Where T2 = 350°C Approximate Levels of I2t (Amperes2 x Seconds) That May Result in Destructive Transformer Failure for Internal Faults Approximate Levels of Fault Current Symmetrical (Amperes) That May Result in Destructive Transformer Failure for Internal Faults PAGE 14 17 20 22 23 23 24 25 26 26 26 27 30 30 31 31 32 32 35 36 37 38 53 54 57 59 66 67 71 72 83 91 92 92 92 92 95 95 .7 1.x i v – Ta b l e s tables TABLE 1.15 1.13 1.2 1.8 Lamp and Ballast Characteristics—240 Volts Front Versus Rear Property Line Placement Additional Materials for an Open-Loop System Sample Spare Cable Cost.7 3.3 2.4 2.12 1.1 1.3 1.5 1.1 2.1 3.10 1.2 3.18 1.16 1.3 3.17 1. Open-Loop and Spare Cable Systems Single-Phase Sub-Feeder Cost Three-Phase Sub-Feeder Cost 25-kV Versus 15-kV Cable and Components Added Cost of Dual-Voltage Transformers Voltage Conversion Cost at Year 10 Voltage Conversion Cost at Year 20 Option 1—Direct-Buried Cable Option 2—PVC Rigid Conduit Option 3—Cable in HDPE Flexible Conduit Present Worth of Cable Installation Options Separate Service Cables Secondary Pedestal Sample Cable Loss Analysis Sample Secondary Cable Data Savings from Deferred Transformer Energization Savings from Deferred Transformer Installation Dimensional Characteristics of Common Conductors (Standard Concentric-Lay) Conductor Physical and Electrical Characteristics Configurations of 4/0 AWG Aluminum Conductor RUS Insulation Thickness Insulation Shield Strippability Ratings Concentric Neutral Configurations for Common Aluminum Cables Comparison of Jacketing Material Test Data Static Coefficient of Friction for Jacketing Materials in PVC Conduit Multiplying Factors to Determine Asymmetrical Fault Currents Where Symmetrical Fault Currents Are Known Effective Cross-Sectional Area of Shield Values of T1. Maximum Allowable Shield Transient Temperature. Approximate Shield Operating Temperature.19 1.6 1.4 1.11 1.20 1.2 2.6 2.5 3.7 2.8 3.4 3. Single Residential Consumer Sample Radial System Cost.14 1.

2 5.22 4.5 5.10 4.13 4.Ta b l e s – x v tables TABLE 4.17 4.23 4.19 4.4 4.7 4. Trefoil Configuration.11 4.24 5.5 4.6 Ampacities for Single-Phase Primary Underground Distribution Cable— XLPE.8 4.18 4.1 5.14 4. TR-XLPE.16 4. Direct Buried. Copper Conductor Ampacity Values—15-kV Cable. 4.3 4. 25-kV.5 Feet Ampacity for 15-kV Copper Conductor.9 4.3 5.21 4. Single Circuit. Surface Contact Time to Produce Burning NEMA Starting Code Letters Surge Withstand Strengths of Polyethylene Insulating Jackets for 15-kV. 75% and 100% Load Factor Ampacity Table for 15-kV Aluminum Conductor. Single Circuit.15 4.2 4. and EPR Insulated Typical Ambient Soil Temperatures at a Depth of 3.12 4.1 4.6.4 5. Trefoil Configuration. 75% and 100% Load Factor Pros and Cons of Installing Cable Circuits in Conduit Ampacity Values—15-kV Cable. Direct Buried. and 35-kV Class JCN Cable 2007 NESC Ground Rod Requirements for JCN Cable Installations Spacing of Test Probes for Testing Resistance of a Single Ground Rod Spacing of Test Probes for Testing Resistance of an Electrode System Soil Resistivities for Different Soil Types and Geological Formations Effect of Temperature on Soil Resistivity PAGE 123 128 130 131 133 135 135 137 139 139 143 146 148 150 153 153 154 155 156 156 156 159 160 161 176 184 194 194 197 198 .20 4. Aluminum Conductor Abstract of ICEA Standards for Maximum Emergency-Load and Short-Circuit-Load Temperatures for Various Insulations Correction Factors to Convert from 25°C Ambient Soil Temperature to 20°C and 30°C Correction Factors for Various Ambient Air Temperatures Typical Ampacities for Various Sizes and Types of 600-Volt Secondary UD Cable—Stranded Aluminum Conductors Average Temperatures for July and August Averaged for the Previous 10 Years Daily Peak Loads Per Unit of Nameplate Rating for Self-Cooled Oil-Immersed Transformers to Give Minimum 20-Year Life Expectancy Application of Single-Phase Distribution Transformers to Serve Residential Consumers—Sample Loading Guide Typical Watts-Per-Square-Foot Factors for Commercial Buildings Typical Electrical Load Power Factor Values Typical Electrical Load Demand Diversity Factor Values Estimated Electrical Demand (Summer) and Energy Consumption (Sample Family Restaurant) Estimated Peak Duration Transformer Loading Capability Table Typical Three-Phase Pad-Mounted Transformer Capacities— Short-Term Overload Capabilities (in kVA) Surface Temperatures Measured at Various Locations on the Cases of Pad-Mounted Transformers.

Surge Voltage Doubled by Reflection Recommended Arrester Locations MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.14 5. Aged BIL. Equipment BIL.2 6. 100 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester Plus Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.15 5. 24. 125 kV. 10 kV.9-kV Underground Distribution System: 125-kV BIL Insulation. 95 kV. 12.17 PAGE 204 209 213 214 215 219 5.17 5.25 PU Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 24. Aged BIL.11 5.16 5. 76 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.19 220 229 234 234 235 235 5.5-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1.4 6. 10-kA Lightning Discharge. Equipment BIL. 125 kV. 21 kV. 10-kA Lightning Discharge. MOV. 4) and Dead-Front Third Arrester (No. Surge Voltage Doubled by Reflection Protective Margin. 125 kV. Aged BIL. Aged BIL. 10 kV.47-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1.9-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1. 100 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No. Aged BIL. 18-kV Arresters at Riser Pole Only.13 5.25 PU Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 34.25 PU Transformer and Cable Data for the System of Figure 6. 21 kV.7 6.18 5. 4): Arrester Rating.9 5.9 6. 76 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating. Equipment BIL. Equipment BIL.x v i – Ta b l e s tables TABLE 5.5 6.20 6.47-kV Underground Distribution System: 95-kV BIL Insulation.3 6. and Riser Pole MOV Arresters Typical Electrical Ratings and Characteristics of Dead-Front Surge Arresters Comparison of Standard Requirements for Surge Arrester Classifications Metal Oxide Surge Arrester Ratings in (kV) rms Protective Margin.10 236 237 248 249 249 250 250 251 265 265 266 272 . 95 kV.10 5. 3): Arrester Rating.12 Ground Resistance in Varying Soil Resistivities Comparison of Protective Characteristics of Heavy-Duty Distribution Class Silicon Carbide. 21 kV. 4): Arrester Rating.7 5.8 6.8 5. 100 kV Ground Resistance Testers Values for Equivalent Capacitances of an Overhead Line with 4/0 ACSR Phase Conductors and a 1/0 ACSR Neutral Conductor Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables with 175 Mils Insulation Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging or XLPE Insulated Cables with 220 Mils Insulation Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables with 260 Mils Insulation Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables with 345 Mils Insulation Phase-to-Ground Capacitance of Three-Phase Grounded-Wye Capacitor Banks Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 12.1 6. Equipment BIL. 9-kV Arresters at Riser Pole Only.6 6.

6 9.13 323 9.1 9.5 7.11 9.16 9.4 9.5 9. Concentric Neutral Construction 260-Mil Primary Cable: Minimum Size of Conduit Necessary to Accommodate Primary Underground Power Cable: 25-kV Cable— 260-Mil Insulation Wall.12 Typical DC Potentials in Soil Suggested DC Potentials for Cathodic Protection Calculated Resistance and Conductance to Ground of Individual Ground Rods as Related to Soil Resistivity Potentials to a Copper-Copper Sulfate Half Cell Sacrificial Anode Resistance.21 .15 9.19 9.5-kV Cable— 345-Mil Insulation Wall Conduit Fill—Secondary Cable: Minimum Size of Conduit Necessary to Accommodate 600-Volt Secondary Underground Power Cable Recommended Dynamic Friction Coefficients for Straight Pulls and Bends Using Soap/Water or Polymer Lubricants Inside Bend Radius for 90° Schedule 40 Conduits Recommended Maximum Sidewall Bearing Pressures Cable Configuration for Various Jam Ratios Recommended Maximum Pulling Tension Stress for Pulling Eyes on Copper and Aluminum Conductors Recommended Maximum Pulling Tension Limits for Basket-Type Pulling Grips PAGE 283 286 288 289 290 291 304 309 314 314 314 315 318 320 320 320 320 321 321 322 9.4 7.1 8.6 8.7 9.14 324 325 333 335 337 338 339 339 9.2 9. Output Current.9 9.1 7.20 9.Ta b l e s – x v i i tables TABLE 7.2 7.8 9.3 7. Concentric Neutral Construction 345-Mil Primary Cable: Minimum Size of Conduit Necessary to Accommodate Primary Underground Power Cable: 34.2 9.3 9.18 9. and Estimated Life Conductance to Ground of BCNs with Effective Diameters as Indicated Minimum Cover Requirements Requirements for Random-Lay Joint Trench Classifications of Plastic Conduit PVC Duct Dimensions—Minimum Wall Thickness Comparison of Characteristics for Four-Inch Size PVC Duct PVC Duct—Impact Strength (Foot-Pounds) PVC Duct Collapse Pressure (PSI) Conduit Fill Conductor Shield Thickness Insulation Shield Thickness Concentric Neutral Thickness—Aluminum Cables Concentric Neutral Thickness—Copper Cables Secondary Cable Insulation Thickness 220-Mil Primary Cable: Minimum Size of Conduit Necessary to Accommodate Primary Underground Power Cable: 15-kV Cable— 220-Mil Insulation Wall.10 9.17 9.

1 11.5 11. Minimum.4 380 382 B.1 10.1 C.1 B.8 A.1 B.7 11.2 Electrical Rating of Elbows Relative Corrosion Resistance of Metal Combinations for Outdoor Terminations Dimensions for Primary Cables to ICEA Specification S-94-649-2000 with Concentric Neutral (Concentric Stranding) Dimensions for Primary Cables to ICEA Specification S-94-649-2000 with Concentric Neutral (Compressed Stranding) Cable Diameter Tolerances Adders for Extruded Insulation Shield (Mils) to Obtain Nominal Diameter Over Insulation Shield of Cable DC Proof-Test Voltages (Conductor to Ground) for Primary Cables Insulation Thickness of Secondary Cables Manufacturers’ Voltage Withstand Tests on Completed Cable Manufacturers’ Voltage Tests on Cables Rated 0 to 600 Volts Acceptable Outage Hours Per Year Per Consumer Allowable Voltage Drop on a 120-Volt Base Resistance of Class B Concentric-Strand Aluminum Cable with Thermosetting and Thermoplastic Insulation for Secondary Distribution Voltages (to 1 kV) at Various Temperatures and Typical Conditions of Installation Corrections for Multiconductor Cables Comparison of Conductor Diameter and Approximate Cable Outside Diameter of Typical Single. and Maximum Insulation Thickness Insulation Shield Thickness for Cables with Wire Neutral Extruded-to-Fill Jacket Thickness PAGE 350 353 11.3 B.5 C. Class B Concentric-Strand Aluminum Cables 60 Hz Reactance of Conductors in the Same Conduit Nominal Composite Insulation Layer Thickness (Ruggedized) Nominal Insulation Thickness (Non-Ruggedized) Extruded Conductor Shield Thickness Nominal.3 E.4 382 384 392 392 400 400 401 402 .4 11.6 11.2 361 362 363 363 367 369 371 371 374 377 B.2 E.x v i i i – Ta b l e s tables TABLE 10.2 11.1 E.2 E.3 11.

32 I.6 G. No.24 G.25 G. Guided Boring Tools.4 G.1 Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration Configuration No. No.31 G.3 I. Hydraulic Pipe Pusher.26 G. No.9 G.29 G.28 G. 6-Inch Type EB Conduit—25-kV Aluminum 7—15-kV Copper 7—15-kV Aluminum 7—25-kV Copper 7—25-kV Aluminum PAGE 415 415 416 416 416 416 417 417 417 417 418 418 418 418 419 419 419 419 420 420 420 420 421 421 421 421 422 422 422 422 423 423 I. No. No.12 G. No.19 G.5-Inch Type DB Conduit—25-kV Aluminum 3—15-kV Copper 3—15-kV Aluminum 3—25-kV Copper 3—25-kV Aluminum 4—15-kV Copper 4—15-kV Aluminum 4—25-kV Copper 4—25-kV Aluminum 5—15-kV Copper 5—15-kV Aluminum 5—25-kV Copper 5—25-kV Aluminum 6—15-kV Copper 6—15-kV Aluminum 6—25-kV Copper 6—25-kV Aluminum 6. No. No. Auger-Type Boring Tools) Cable Installation Equipment Manufacturers (Primary Circuit Joints. No.16 G. 3. No. 6-Inch Type EB Conduit—15-kV Aluminum 6. No.5 G. No. No. 1—15-kV Copper 1—15-kV Aluminum 1—25-kV Copper 1—25-kV Aluminum 2—15-kV Copper 2—15-kV Aluminum 2—25-kV Copper 2—25-kV Aluminum 2. No. No.Ta b l e s – x i x tables TABLE G.2 I. Secondary Circuit Joints and Terminations) Manufacturers of Joint. Trench Compactors.23 G. No.20 G.22 G.30 G. No. No. Cable Plow. No.27 G.14 G.15 G. No. Elbows. 3-Inch Type DB Conduit—15-kV Aluminum 2. Elbow. Backhoes.7 G. No. No.3 G. and Terminations.11 G.1 G.13 G. Piercing Tools. Track-Mounted Cable Plows.17 G. No. No. and Termination Accessories and Kits Partial Listing of Cable Testing Equipment Suppliers 427 428 429 429 . No. No. No.8 G.18 G.10 G. No. No.2 G. No.21 G. No.4 Cable Installation Equipment Manufacturers (Trenchers.

1 5.7 4.5 4. S1 and S3 Open) Continuous or Full-Length Counterpoise (Switches S1 and S3 Closed.9 5. 21 kV PAGE 35 36 37 83 84 93 131 140 141 141 146 149 151 157 160 191 191 191 201 202 202 203 204 204 205 206 206 206 5.4 5. 10 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.12 5. S2.7 5.8 4. Smaller Resistance (Switch S2 Closed.6 4. 4): Arrester Rating.16 5.10 5.3 3.4 4.2 4. and S3 Open) Attaching a 100-Foot Counterpoise to the Riser Pole Ground Rod and the Other End to a Remote.15 5.2 1.13 5.1 3.2 3.8 5.x x – Ex am p l e s e x a m p l es EXAMPLE 1.14 5.3 4.1 4.1 1. 10 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.3 5.11 5.17 217 234 234 235 .3 4.2 Cable Loss Calculations Calculating Losses on Secondary Cables Typical Costs Associated with Transformer Losses Device Rated in Maximum Asymmetrical Current Capacity Device Rated for Maximum Circuit X/R Ratio Determine Minimum Shield Size for Known Through-Fault Current Comparing the Ampacity of Trefoil and Flat-Spaced Configurations Single-Phase UD Cable Ampacities Emergency Overload Rating Cable in Protective Riser Three-Phase Substation Exit Ampacity Average Daily Temperature Selection for a Summer-Peaking Utility Selection of Maximum Permissible Transformer Per-Unit Loading Pad-Mounted Transformer Sizing for New UD Residential Consumers Sizing Commercial Transformers Dedicated Transformer Load No Counterpoise Added (Switches S1. S2 Open) A Single 8-Foot × 3/4-Inch Ground Rod Driven in Soil with a Resistivity of 250 Ohm-M Two 8-Foot × 3/4-Inch Ground Rods Placed 5 Feet Apart Two Rods Spaced 16 Feet Apart Group of Four Rods Increase in Rod Length Change in Soil Resistivity The Effect of a Two-Layer Soil with a Top-Layer Resistivity of 250 Ohm-M and a Bottom-Layer Soil Resistivity of 50 Ohm-M Counterpoise of #2 AWG Conductor Buried 30 Inches Deep for a Distance of 100 Feet More Conductive Soil Counterpoise Burial Depth Protective Margin Calculation for Riser Pole Application— Industry Standard 4 kA/µs Average Rise Time for Lightning Strokes Assumed MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.6 5.5 5.9 5.

18 5.1 7.1 B. 4): Arrester Rating.000 Feet of Cable Determining Required Shift in Potential Calculating Required Anode Output Current Selecting Anode Types.6 7.3 7.2 417 422 J.1 G.19 MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.5 7. Sizes.4 G.2 B. 21 kV MOV Riser Pole Arrester Plus Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.Exa m p l e s – x x i exa m p l e s EXAMPLE 5. 21 kV Maximum Lengths of Cable Circuit Possible Energizing Multiple-Transformer System with Single-Pole Measuring Earth Resistivity Calculating the Neutral Conductance to Ground Per 1.3 B. 4) and Dead-Front Third Arrester (No.2 431 432 .2 7.2 7.1 6.4 7.7 7. 3): Arrester Rating.1 B.1 J.8 11. and Numbers Estimating Neutral Conductance to Ground of BCN Cable Determining Required Shift in Neutral Potential Determining Output Current and Anodes Required Diameter Calculation Transformer Voltage Drop Calculation Secondary Cable Resistance and Reactance Complete Secondary Voltage Drop Calculation Voltage Flicker Calculation Ampacity Reduction for Direct-Buried Versus Conduit Encasement for Flat-Spaced Installation Increase in Ampacity for Duct Bank Installation When Type EB Conduit is Used Versus Schedule 40 Cable Pulling Example 1: Maximum Straight-Pull Distance for Three 25-kV Cables Installed in Five-Inch PVC Conduit Cable Pulling Example 2: Feasibility of Pulling Three 25-kV Cables into a Six-Inch PVC Conduit PAGE 235 236 264 272 284 288 289 289 291 292 292 293 363 379 383 385 387 6.

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falling tree limbs. Consumers facing outages due to wildlife. Next. UD system reliability. To reverse this trend. the engineer must understand how these components can be configured to form different types of UD systems and the special design concerns of each. On completing this task. many of the present UD systems are less reliable and have more operational problems than do comparable overhead distribution systems. Unfortunately. . Future upgrades or replacement.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 1 In This Section: Design of an Underground Distribution System System Components Types of UD Systems Reliability of UD Systems Design Considerations Future Upgrades and Replacements Economic Comparison of System Configurations UD Loss Economics Steps for Layout of a UD System Summary and Recommendations Since their introduction. The economics of different system configurations. 2. and 4. Design efficient systems that will have the lowest reasonable cost for both installation and operation. cooperatives must undertake several comprehensive steps: 1. underground distribution (UD) systems have proved generally popular with electric consumers. During the design process. This section gives the engineer guidelines for designing a high-quality UD system. the engineer must have comprehensive knowledge of the components of a UD system. Before starting a design. The final design task is layout of the UD system. the engineer will have a final plan and staking sheets to give to construction crews. Although some of this popularity is due to aesthetics—eliminating pole lines and overhead conductors and “ugly” tree trimming—greater reliability is the greater attraction. 3. Specify high-quality materials and components. the engineer must consider the following: • • • • • UD system safety. Plan carefully to minimize problems during construction and provide for future operation and replacement of these systems. Stipulate every safety provision to ensure reliability of the system. and • The economics of UD losses. and ice storms think underground systems more desirable. UD system operation and maintenance.

1: UD System Components. Because equipment. Moisture also ac(transformers.2 – Se c t io n 1 1 System Components anyone enters. and switches below ground repad-mounted a total underground system is quires buried vaults. The pad-mounted equipment is leads to premature equipment failure. sectionalizing devices. the equipment is easier to operate and maintain. with its major system comunderground enclosure. This type of system is very difficult to operate As a result. A water often accumulates in more reliable system consists these vaults. This requireIn the past. Maintenance and operation of the and subject to fewer corrosion problems. placed on the surface instead of below ground. formers. sectionalizing devices. impractical and unreliable. also increases below ground. of water. . thus. If the enclosure is full ponents. the water must be pumped out before Cable Termination Surge Arrester Underground Cable Riser Cable Terminations Pad-Mounted Switchgear/ Junction Cabinet Flat Pad Box Pad Ground Line Pad-Mounted Transformer Dead-Front Surge Arrester Cable Splice Ground Electrode Underground Cable. Secondary Voltage Service Ground FIGURE 1. cables and Because of these problems. Primary Voltage Ground Electrode Underground Cable. the equipment of underground cables and has to be suitable for operation pad-mounted equipment under water.1. This equipment usually require a person to enter the type of UD system. is shown in Figure 1. Placing transthe duration of any outage. and celerates the corrosion of this equipment and switches). some UD systems ment increases the time were total underground systems A typical UD system needed to access the equipwith all components located consists of buried ment and.

0 27 95 125 200 200 -1 COMPARTMENT -1 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -1 25 PME-4 COMPARTMENT PME-5 -3 COMPARTMENT PMH-6 COMPARTMENT -4 -3 COMPARTMENT -4 COMPARTMENT -3 COMPARTMENT -4 COMPARTMENT -3 COMPARTMENT -4 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -1 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -1 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -1 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -1 PME-9 PME-10 PME-11 PME-12 FIGURE 1. a single enclosure can provide switching on the main feed and fusing on two taps off the main feed. fuses. Section 10 describes the different types of terminations and how to use them on a UD system. 2005. or 35-kV class) cable carries power from a source to the primary bushing of a transformer. Section 3. Adapted from S&C Electric Company. switches.2 shows the schematics for several types of switchgear. The secondary-voltage (600-Volt class) cable carries power from the secondary bushings of the transformer to the consumer. PAD-MOUNTED EQUIPMENT The main types of pad-mounted equipment are transformers. For example. arresters must be properly connected to the cable grounding system. Section 2. protective devices. Figure 1. this component provides the engineer with many options in the design of a UD system. The primary-voltage (15-. reviews the different types of pad-mounted switchgear. RMS Mini-Rupter Cont. Because of the many configurations possible. SURGE ARRESTERS AND GROUNDING ELECTRODES Surge arresters are used to protect underground systems from overvoltages induced by lightning and other transients. Underground System Sectionalizing.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 1 UNDERGROUND CABLE The most extensive component of a UD system is the underground cable. 600 600 Short-Circuit MVA 3-Phase Sym. describes cable construction and gives guidelines for specifying high-quality cable. Pad-mounted transformers function the same as those overhead. and other devices. Pad-mounted switchgear usually functions as a combination of switches and sectionalizing devices. To operate effectively. at Load Dropping Rated Voltage 600 400 350 540 17. Examples of ground electrodes are: COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -2 COMPARTMENT -3 COMPARTMENT -4 kV Fuse Nom. and switching devices.2: Schematics for Different Types of Switchgear. . The terminations provide a way to connect underground cables to transformer bushings. CABLE TERMINATIONS AND JOINTS Cable terminations and joints are other important components of a UD system. Cable Selection. 25-. Max BIL Max 14. The joints provide a way to connect two underground cables.4 COMPARTMENT Ampere. The grounding system must have ground electrodes that are in optimum contact with the soil.

and Metallic water or sewer systems. or monolithic. rigid suropenings for cable access into the equipment enface for supporting pad-mounted equipment. mounting provides additional space for cables Another important factor in a stable installabelow grade. A ground sleeve or box pad also provides the The equipment must also attach securely to extra space needed for large-diameter cables. Therefore. or switchgear. pad.4. Secure attachment is particstalled below the ground surface. but is suitable for equipment with tion is proper soil compaction beneath the pad. the large-diameter cables for Subsurface. requirements of American National Standards Some types of cable installations require more Institute/Institute of Electrical and Electronics space than is available with a flat pad. This type of an unsecured piece of equipment to slide. fuse cabinets. ing and cable terminations. the mounting surface to prevent it from being Typical installation of a ground sleeve is moved or tipped over by people. If some of the equipment weight is transferred to the attached cables. connectors. made of polyethylene) and expose the interior . and erode. lawn shown in Figure 1.74 (Standard Requirements diameter cables. cotant pad-mounted equipment enclosures. This operatives in areas with extended periods of tamper-resistant design helps prevent vandalism cold weather may prefer using a ground sleeve to utility equipment and protect the public from (“basement”) or a box pad instead of a flat pad. The flat pad provides a EQUIPMENT MOUNTINGS uniform surface for mounting equipment and has Equipment mountings provide a flat. this type of pad is from poking a wire or other well compacted.12. or vehicles. The former code has or operate. Because this pad is placed bottom edge of pad-mounted directly on the ground. The pad’s slick surface makes it easy for three inches above final grade. this settling can damage transformer bushings. animals. large-diameter cables are stiffer and have Pad-Mounted Equipment-Enclosure Integrity) a larger minimum bending radius than do smalland ANSI/IEEE37. Low temperatures rupter Switchgear for Alternating Current Sysmake cables stiffer and more difficult to install tems Up to 38 kV).4 – Se c t io n 1 1 • • • • Driven ground rods. Thus. Semiconducting jacketed cables. Ground sleeves are generally limited in their When this happens. pads can tilt or warp (if ability to support heavier pieces of equipment. the soil will settle pad-mounted transformers and junction cabinets. the pad may not support all the equipment weight. If the settling is severe. contact with energized parts. It closure as shown in Figure is very important to mount the 1.3. leaving the pad with little support. Figure 1. Detailed information on cable grounding systems and surge protection is contained in Section 5. Doing so prevents persons the pad must be However. compartments of transformers. only one entry compartment such as three-phase Without proper compaction. usually adequate for singleobject into the interior comphase pad-mounted transformpartment of pad-mounted ers and small single-phase equipment and meets the sectionalizing devices. with the ularly important when polyethylene pads are equipment mounting surface elevated two to used. Providing additional cable space become a standard for specifying tamper-resishelps minimize these problems. and switch terminals. there equipment flush to the flat surThe soil beneath is limited space for cable trainface of the supporting pad. Another Interrupter Switchgear and Fused Load-Interconsideration is cold weather. For exEngineers (ANSI/IEEE) C57. Vault and Pad-Mounted Load require more space for cable training. Buried counterpoise wires. The ground sleeve is inmowers.1 shows driven ground rods as the ground electrodes.28 (Standard for ample. Types of Equipment Mountings The most basic type of equipment mounting is a flat.

Care must be exbe suitable for the inches exposed above grade. FIGURE 1. Minn. for example. This type of pad is ideal for supporting pad-mounted switchgear that has multiple cable entry compartments. This is of particular conFiberglass Inc. The states the strength rating of remaining space is open and the box pad walls. A perimeter lip supports the box pad manufacturer clearly pad-mounted equipment. with typically three to six and larger. The material and pad design must have the strength required to support the FIGURE 1. cern with box pads.3: Flat Pad for Equipment Mounting..Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 5 1 FIGURE 1.. provides plenty of room to work with the cables. Fiberglass-reinforced concrete. Source: Nordic equipment weight. because all the equipment weight is supported by the outside pad walls. Pad Materials Manufacturers offer a varied selection of pad materials. Because these materials have very different properties.5: Box Pad for Equipment Mounting. .5). is a box pad (see Figure 1. Warren. The third type of mounting and is especially important. including the following: • • • • Steel-reinforced concrete. the engineer must carefully select the material type suitable for the intended application. 2002. ercised in making sure the intended application. when box pads The box pad is placed in the are used for transformers Pad material must ground rather than on the sur500-kilovolt amperes (kVA) face. and Polyethylene.4: Ground Sleeve. Fiberglass.

Therefore. These cables carry of cable failure. Types of UD Systems SUBSTATION CIRCUIT EXITS Disconnect Switches Underground cable is often used for substation circuit exits from distribution substations. the engineer must . Cracks or material breakdown lead to a loss of mechanical strength. A puncture through the polyethylene allows water to enter the pad and rot the wooden braces. the engineer must be particularly concerned Undergroung Circuit with reliability. grounding electrodes. surge arresters. Ground Placing the cable in a conduit system or concreteElectrode encased duct bank helps protect it from mechanical damage. these pads would not be suitable for use in areas that are subject to flooding. If the underground cable fails.6. meet system operating needs. thus. and. When designing underground substation circuit exits. and grounding electrodes. cable terminations. The pad materials must not break down or crack from ultraviolet exposure or frigid conditions. making the area around a substation more attractive and workCable able. reliability is to install a spare cable or provide backup capability from another source. Section 9 contains information on FIGURE 1. and vehicle damage. the Exit Cable circuit outage interrupts power to many consumers. The conduit. All these factors must be balanced when selecting a pad design for a particular UD system. A final property to review is pad buoyancy. pads must be of a design that will have long-term durability under adverse conditions. they do reduce are reliability. A second property to review is the performance of the material outdoors where it is exposed to frost and ultraviolet radiation. In summary. part of the pad strength is lost. Another way to improve Circuit Exit. growth. As an added benefit. Therefore. may be more reliable than overhead exits. only one cable is damaged. See Figure 1. this type of UD system consists of underground primary-voltage cable. Neutral In most cases. and warpage results. each underground substation circuit exit will terminate on a riser pole and feed overhead circuit conductors.6 – Se c t io n 1 1 Also of concern are polyethylene pads with wooden braces. system large loads and may operate the power restoration time if close to their ampacity rating. surge arresters. wildlife contacts. underground substaSurge Termination Arrester tion circuit exits are protected from ice loading. Some of the polyethylene pads tend to float and can overturn pad-mounted equipment. and maintain equipment security. Underground circuit exits help reduce congestion on poles just outside a substation. AlDesign concerns for A special concern for unthough spare cables or backup derground circuit exits is cable substation circuit exits options do not change the risk ampacity.6: Underground Substation duct bank installations. cable terminations. and disconnect switches are commonly Riser Vent referred to as a riser assembly. and ampacity. When the wooden braces rot. Therefore.

The protective device in the substation clears a fault on a main feeder. • Surge arresters. • Pad-mounted junction box or sectionalizing switch. Radial Main Feeder The radial main feeder has one source and delivers power to a load area along a single path. A main feeder is that portion of a distribution circuit between the substation and the first in-line overcurrent protective device. and Section 10 provides information on the types of cable terminations. The engineer must also determine the maximum load to be carried by the main feeder in order to select a cable with adequate ampacity and choose the 200-ampere or 600-ampere class of cable terminations. Therefore. Section 4 provides detailed information on cable ampacity. system growth. This type of arrangement is shown in Figure 1. This feeder can also serve several load areas by using a junction box or sectionalizing switch with fused taps. and the resulting ampacity. MAIN FEEDERS Underground cable can serve as a distribution main feeder. . To Load Area Junction Box or Switching Cabinet Junction Box or Sectionalizing Switch Primary Voltage Cable To Load Area Substation Junction Box or Sectionalizing Switch To Load Area FIGURE 1. The utility engineer must consider this characteristic when designing a main feeder. particularly when deciding between a radial or open-loop feeder. • Cable terminations. and • Grounding electrodes. Because most faults on an underground main feeder are cable failures and are permanent. a main feeder fault causes an outage to the entire circuit. power to the circuit may remain off until the cable is repaired.7: Radial Main Feeder.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 7 1 carefully determine the cable operating conditions.7 and may have the following components: • Underground primary-voltage cable.

or by opening the load-side switch on the first sectionalizing switch to isolate the faulted cable.8: Radial Main Feeder with Faulted Cable Section. it does decrease outage time by allowing the cooperative to replace a section of faulted cable without disturbing the earth surface. However. The spare cable or conduit provides no mechanical protection but does decrease restoration time if only one cable is faulted. the cooperative cannot restore power to the other consumers until crews repair the cable fault.8 – Se c t io n 1 1 Power On Open Load-Side Switch Junction Box or Sectionalizing Switch Fault Open Power On Substation Power Off Power Off FIGURE 1. consider a fault in the second line section as shown in Figure 1. The cooperative can restore power to the first load area by placing the faulted cable(s) in a parking stand. A concrete-encased duct bank provides substantial mechanical protection from dig-ins and should be considered in areas congested with other underground utilities. This saves substantial time. particularly when the main feeder is located beneath a roadway. Because the costs of these installation methods vary significantly. Information on comparative system reliability may be found in Appendix A. This fault trips the protective device at the substation and interrupts power to all consumers on the faulted circuit. . the simple radial does have limited operational flexibility and should not be used to serve a large number of consumers. or by installing a spare cable or conduit in the trench. A conduit system provides limited mechanical protection.8 shows this option. Under any circumstance. Because the radial feeder has no alternative source or path. Figure 1. It is possible to improve the reliability of a radial system by installing the cable in a concrete-encased duct bank or in a conduit system.8. each cooperative must weigh the advantages of these more expensive installations against their costs. For example. The junction box or sectionalizing switch provides sectionalizing of the load areas and limited sectionalizing of the main feeder.

Each source provides power along a single path to the designated open point in a junction box or a sectionalizing switch. utility crews can isolate a faulted cable section and restore power to all consumers. Pad-Mounted Transformer Sectionalizing Switch FIGURE 1. With an open-loop system. Three-Phase. 1 and remaining line sections from Substation No.O. Substation No. N.O. 1 Looped-Primary Circuit Substation No.O. 1 Looped-Primary Circuit Substation No. This type of arrangement would operate as an open-loop system. the open point results from placing one set of cables in a parking stand. In a junction box.O. .10: Open-Loop Feeder with Faulted Cable Section. unlike the radial feeder that has only one source.10. A cable fault in the second line section interrupts power to all consumers on that circuit. as shown in Figure 1. leaving one of the switches open creates an open point. 2. Pad-Mounted Transformer N. N. crews can feed the first section from Substation No.O.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 9 1 Open-Loop Feeder In dense load areas. 2 N. an underground main feeder may tie together two substations. The open-loop feeder (see Figure 1. A main feeder may also tie two circuits from the same substation. After isolating the faulted cable section. = Normally Open Point Sectionalizing Switch FIGURE 1. 2 Fault N. However.9: Open-Loop Feeder.9) provides much higher system availability than does the radial system. the open-loop feeder has two sources. In a sectionalizing switch. The components of this system are the same as those of a radial system. = Normally Open Point Three-Phase. Because crews can restore power to all Substation No.

the outage time is much shorter than with a radial feeder. also called a load area feeder. SUB-FEEDERS The radial feeder can be extended to serve The more common underground feeder is the submultiple consumers as shown in Figure 1. tire circuit and. fewer consumers than consider an open-loop system.1 0 – Se c t io n 1 1 load areas before repairing the cable fault. • Adding a spare cable or conduit to the trench. Radial Feeder The simplest type of load area feeder is a radial feeder. As the similar fault on a main feeder. As a result. Open-loop feeders provide much more operating flexibility than do simple radial feeders. in areas congested with underground utilities. However. The two types of feeders it becomes more practical to also have different functions. . it is important to judge the benefits of installing duct bank or conduit against the additional cost. such as a hospital or police station. For exambetween it and the protective device at the subple. sections of cable on a sub-feeder often terminate in padmounted transformers. System reliability considerations generally dictate open-loop feeders as the preferred design. feeder. a cable fault interrupts power to all of feeder has at least one stage of sectionalizing consumers beyond the fault location. Again.11. a fault on a sub-feeder does sults in a power outage to not interrupt power to the entransformers T2 through T5. affects The power remains off until fewer consumers than does a A cable fault on a the cable is repaired. However. Therefore. as already noted.11: Radial Feeder. thus. The basic function of a main does a similar fault The subsection Economic feeder is to deliver power to on a main feeder. Pad-Mounted Transformers Fault Riser Pole T1 Power On Power Off T2 T3 T4 T5 FIGURE 1. The radial feeder is usually the most practical way to serve a single consumer. The main Comparison of System Confunction of a sub-feeder is to figurations. deliver power to consumers. it is not critical to install the cable in a concrete-encased duct bank or conduit. the concrete-encased duct bank will help protect cables from dig-ins. a fault between transformers T1 and T2 restation. The sub-feeder can have several configurations ranging from a simple radial feeder to a complex multiloop feeder. As a result. which comes later Single-Phase. and • Placing the cable in a conduit or duct bank. often requires a more reliable system. which may dictate the use of a larger cable size than otherwise needed. This type However. An open-loop feeder also requires that the designer consider the ampacity of the feeder cables while serving all possible loop segments. load area feeders. sub-feeder affects number of consumers increases. Methods for improving reliability include the following: • Changing to an open-loop configuration. a single consumer with critical loads.

O. This type of system usually has a sub- . Pad-Mounted Transformers Normally Open Point FIGURE 1.O. Legend N. Open-Loop Feeder As mentioned earlier. in this section. Pad-Mounted Transformer N. Multiple-Loop Feeder In heavy load areas. provides better system availability.O. Large subdivisions or commercial shopping areas are ideal applications of open-loop systems. multiple-loop feeders are necessary to improve sectionalizing and to allow the coordination of overcurrent protective devices.12: Open-Loop Feeder in Shopping Center. Utility crews can isolate any section of faulted cable and restore power to all transformers.O. This feature makes the open-loop feeder a preferred design for UD systems serving multiple or critical consumers. A typical multiple-loop system is shown in Figure 1. An open-loop feeder also requires that the designer consider the ampacity of the primary cables and devices while serving all possible loop segments. Pad-Mounted Transformer Single-Phase. therefore. the open-loop feeder has two sources and. N. Three-Phase. provides information on the economics of radial versus open-loop systems.O.13: Multiple-Loop System. Sectionalizing Switch N. FIGURE 1.13.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 1 1 Riser Pole Three-Phase Feeder Riser Pole Three-Phase. which may dictate the use of a larger cable size than otherwise needed. Figure 1. Normally Open Point N.12 shows an openloop feeder in a shopping center. Riser Pole Riser Pole Sectionalizing Switch N.O.

To minimize dig-ins by consumers. Most secondary cable faults are the result of mechanical damage to the cable. the cooperative may particularly want to use conduit in areas congested with other utilities. Cable dig-ins by other utilities or consumers also damage cable. Appendix B lists the acceptable voltage levels and gives methods for calculating voltage drop and flicker. two-wire power supply. so the engineer must make accommodations in underground systems to include it. . To properly design this part of the system. TRANSFORMER AND SECONDARY SYSTEMS Pad-mounted transformers and underground secondary-voltage cable constitute the final segment of a UD system. The engineer must design a system that provides the consumer with acceptable voltage levels throughout the day and during motor starting. Section 4 provides information for making these selections. The engineer needs to develop a plan at the start of the project for eventual (if not actual) street and area lighting. service may be provided through a two-wire duplex underground Lighting Package Pole Cable Riser Ground Electrode Underground Secondary-Voltage Cable FIGURE 1. This arrangement provides excellent system availability. the engineer must first select the appropriate equipment rating and cable ampacity. Conduits and pedestals can then be installed at strategic locations that will minimize future trenching in lawns or around consumer facilities. The sectionalizing switches on the sub-feeder have fused taps that serve other open-loop feeders. The cooperative may want to consider using the same lighting package that it uses in overhead areas.1 2 – Se c t io n 1 1 feeder that serves as an open-loop system between two sources. Utilities can minimize mechanical damage by following the proper installation techniques described in Section 9 and by specifying cable with an abrasion-resistant or self-healing insulating jacket (see Section 2). Doing so will avoid unnecessary duplication of stock and minimize confusion during installation and maintenance. the engineer must consider reliability. Most cooperatives furnish this service. Doing so helps prevent cable damage if the consumer installs a fence on the property line. cable should be installed two to three feet off the property line. It uses a combination of overhead components (poles and a lighting package) and underground components (underground secondary-voltage cable. As noted. It also speeds up fault location because the large load area has been sectionalized into small load groups. which may dictate the use of a larger cable size than otherwise needed.14: Area Lighting System. and grounding electrodes).14. A third design concern with secondary systems is voltage drop and voltage flicker. These standard light packages usually operate from 120-Volts single phase or 120/240Volts single phase. If the lighting package requires a 120-Volt. This type of UD system is shown in Figure 1. A multiple-loop feeder also requires that the designer consider the ampacity of the feeder cables and devices while serving all possible loop segments. STREET AND AREA LIGHTING Public safety and consumer convenience require street and area lighting in the area served by a large percentage of underground projects. Street and area lights are generally self-contained units with an integral photoelectric cell for control. The conduit offers some mechanical protection. Another method for minimizing dig-in damage is to use conduit. Second. particularly from hand digging. surge arresters.

conductor along its entire length. will be most economical. Otherwise. purchasing a must be grounded of the transformer and into all twisted duplex cable with a connected services. This is The magnitude and power factor of the starting particularly important because street and area current depend on the type of ballast. In such When aluminum is used. If pole grounding conductors are not inlong runs of small secondary voltage conductors stalled. have an insulating coating for corrosion protecLighting packages may be installed on wood tion. polyvinyl chloride (PVC) conduit should poles are installed on a metal screw anchor be used to protect the cable riser. 10 lems with lightning surges. This cable should be still require adequate grounding to avoid probpurchased only with copper conductors No. the cable ing system. In areas ruggedized insulation system and bonded to the with intense lightning activity. metal halide. a ground rod is also recommended. Metallic poles should AWG or larger. as does lights are often among the highest objects in a the acceptable voltage range for satisfactory opsubdivision served by an underground system. the most critical case is during wood pole installation must be equipped with a starting of the most distant light. This is the time pole-grounding conductor (No. Metal poles will cable may be substituted. If the cooperative has a lighting conductors and be large amount of underground Metallic lighting poles propagated into the secondary street lighting. UF cables if the cables are shielded from sunType UF (underground feeder) commercial light along their entire length. dix C. the ground rod may be eliminated. Each sodium systems. they generally of the lighting support bracket. In these cases. that serves a lighting installation. choose to install metal lighting poles. the size should not be cases. The Type UF cable must be also be directly connected to this same groundrated as sunlight-resistant. As most wood poles may allow the smaller cable used contemporary lighting systems are either merfor lighting service to protrude or be pinched cury vapor. U-guards The main limitation on the layout of street are not recommended because irregularities in lighting conductors is voltage drop. On wood tions. the lightning must characteristics. If poles. eration. Table 1. larger lighted. 6 AWG copper) of highest current draw and lowest power factor. 10 AWG. not be compromised. possibly No. the height of the fixture mounting should smaller than No. a much larger portion of the lightning . In cases of infrequent use or where ruggedisunlight resistance will not be required on Type zed duplex cable is not readily available. the pole interior may aluminum conductors. Schedule 40 base. it should be installed in Satisfactory performance may be achieved with accordance with standard practices for the particcopper conductors as small as No. 6 American Wire Gauge (AWG). When this duplex is Where aesthetics are of prime used. the conductor may be importance. PVC is recommended as a minimum. which is also positively connected to may deteriorate where it is exposed to sunlight the neutral of the secondary supply conductors. 2 AWG. With metal poles. In ular type of light and the size of the area to be areas where deep frost lines are routine. This system neutral for the cooperative should consider cable will essentially comply installing secondary lightning with the secondary cable speclightning protection arresters on each transformer ification presented in Appenand for public safety. that is attached to a driven ground rod. If direct-buried poles are installed or if the poles at a height appropriate for the size of the poles are installed on poured concrete foundalamp and the area to be lighted. or high-pressure between the U-guard and the pole surface. cooperatives may either copper or aluminum.1 gives examples of typical light In cases of lightning strikes. between the pole riser conduit and the bottom If the poles are direct buried. generally be used as a raceway to conceal the might be considered as a minimum gauge. It is obvious that the regulator have a relatively low impedance path into the ballasts offer a substantial advantage in allowing earth.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 3 1 current will travel along the cable.

also referred to as the restoration time.1 4 – Se c t io n 1 1 TABLE 1. such as trees.6 5. material or design defects in a UD system may reverse the reliability advantage of underground distribution.6 0. all lighting circuits should be designed for a voltage drop of no more than 10 percent when the largest probable lamp is started.6 3.9 2. referred to as the interruption rate or outage rate. Allowable Voltage Fluctuation 240V±5% 240V±5% 240V±13% 240V±5% 240V±5% 240V±5% 240V±5% 240V±5% 240V±10% 240V±10% Operating Current (amperes) 1. high power factor reactor 250-watt metal halide floodlight.6 2.4 2.0 Starting Current (amperes) 2.000 21.3 2. normal power factor reactor ballast Lumens 7.8 0. some animals. high power factor reactor 250-watt high-pressure sodium. In fact. Outage rates are measured in outages per year. normal power factor reactor ballast 400-watt mercury vapor. weather.9 3.500 27. normal power factor reactor 250-watt high-pressure sodium.1 0. and vehicles.500 27.8 1. Source: General Electric Lighting Systems Product Catalog 1985. UD lines and equipment are located where they are not vulnerable to most of the common hazards that cause outages on overhead facilities. Therefore. The second measure is the average duration of an interruption.950 21.000 9. The first is the frequency of interruptions occurring at a particular point on a system.9 1.4 3.4 1.500 50.500 9.7 Size and Type 175-watt mercury vapor.000 20.1: Lamp and Ballast Characteristics—240 Volts.0 1. all types of high-pressure sodium and metal halide lamps are more sensitive than are mercury vapor lamps to voltage dips. However.1 1. Consideration should also be given to selecting 240-volt ballasts as opposed to 120-volt units. MEASUREMENT OF RELIABILITY Reliability is usually measured in two ways.000 Power Factor 55% 54% 90% 34% 42% 90% 90% 90% 90% 90% Allowable Voltage Dip 20% 20% 50% 10% 10% 10% 10% 10% 10% 10% without unstable lamp operation. Moreover.6 1. many early UD systems installed by cooperatives and other utilities turned out to be less reliable than comparable overhead systems.500 36. high power factor reactor 400-watt high-pressure sodium. normal power factor reactor ballast 400-watt mercury vapor. normal power factor reactor ballast 400-watt metal halide floodlight. .9 1. regulator ballast 100-watt high-pressure sodium. Reliability of UD Systems One of the most important advantages of a welldesigned UD system is greater reliability for consumers compared to an overhead system. These experiences have made it clear that reliability engineering is a necessary part of UD system design. because they draw less current and generally create decreased operating losses. normal power factor reactor 100-watt high-pressure sodium.

facilities serving many consumers (or kVA) may need to be designed for higher reliability than should facilities serving few consumers (or kVA). Any XLPE cable acquired should also be tree retardant (TR-XLPE). and • Lost cooperative revenue. Reliability calculations of this type usually do not consider momentary interruptions that are successfully cleared by automatic circuit reclosing operations. both TR-XLPE. and • Requiring cable to be jacketed. System reliability undeniably affects many aspects of a cooperative’s service. Furthermore. • Consumer financial losses resulting from interrupted production. A simple index of reliability used by many utilities is hours of outage per year. LOOP-FEED DESIGN The time spent to locate an underground cable fault. Thus. RUS did not disapprove the use of XLPE cable. Furthermore. CABLE FAILURE RATES In the mid-1980s. however. • Costs to the cooperative of service restoration. must be aware of the basic principles of reliability assessment so they can achieve satisfactory but economical UD system designs. In December 1987. A combination of these two measurements yields the percentage of availability for a particular location on a distribution system. This analysis considers only those outages that require manual intervention to restore service. respectively. As a consequence of these experiences in the 1980s. • Impairment of other cooperative facilities. equipment damage. There is generally no need to discriminate in design quality between some parts of the system and others. therefore.02 and 0. Nevertheless.(EPR) insulated cables provide improved reliability. The analysis presented in this manual. As a result of recent vastly improved quality control in cable manufacturing processes. All these factors have a serious impact on satisfactory cooperative system operation. or other causes. • Increasing minimum insulation thickness to 220 mils for 15-kV cable and to 345 mils for 25-kV cable. the results of distribution system outages include the following: • Consumer dissatisfaction. per consumer. The main specification changes were the following: • Removing all HMWPE cable from approval. cooperatives should procure new cable with the requirement that the revised RUS specifications be met. studies revealed that these failure rates were continuing to worsen as the cables aged. At that time. does not consider this parameter because most cooperative UD systems are fairly uniform in design and consumer concentration. currently called Rural Utility Services (RUS). the failure rates for commonly used UD primary cables were unacceptable. the Rural Electrification Administration (REA). REA Specification for 15-kV and 25-kV Primary Underground Power Cable. excavate to the point of its failure. Industry tests are continuing to develop information on the expected failure rates for different insulation systems. and . The most common causes of failure were electrochemical treeing of the insulation layer and corrosion of the exposed neutral conductors. RUS is currently preparing an even further refined U-1 specification to reflect these continuing cable insulation improvements. outages are considered to be sustained interruptions. almost all faults attributable to underground system components are permanent. responded to the cable failure problem by issuing a revision of Bulletin 50-70 (U-1). For this discussion.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 5 1 Outage duration is usually measured in hours. concerns about XLPE were raised in studies. Section 2 discusses cable selection in detail. Although the order of importance may vary with individual situations. Appendix A provides a method for calculating UD system reliability. Comprehensive reliability analysis also considers the number of consumers or kVA of load each outage affects. leading to the bulletin’s revision. Engineers.and ethylene propylene rubber. The failure rates for cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) and high-molecular-weight polyethylene (HMWPE) cables were approaching 0.08 per mile per year.

or could create outages on source fusing devices. Pad-Mounted Transformer T2 T5 T3 T4 install a UD cable repair joint is typically much longer than that required to perform a comparable repair on an overhead line.O. It must be noted that it is vitally important for loop-feed UD systems to be fed from two sources of the same feeder circuit out of a substation. These actions promptly restore service to all consumers on the cable run. appropriate sectionalizing. However. Under loop-feed design. Furthermore. Damaged Cable Section FIGURE 1. These high current levels could result in exceeding cable and/or termination current-carrying ratings.15: Loop-Feed Design of UD System Under Normal Conditions. a repair crew can disconnect both ends of the failed cable section and close the circuit at the normal open point (see Figure 1. Therefore. Pad-Mounted Transformer N. the cooperative needs to apply the specialized engineering knowledge gained from many years of experience with underground power distribution. with no switching or sectionalizing devices in between. the restoration time for most UD outages would be much longer than is typical on overhead systems.1 6 – Se c t io n 1 1 Riser Pole Riser Pole T1 T6 Legend Single-Phase. to achieve high reliability.16: Loop-Feed Design of UD System with Damaged Cable Section. and loop-feed designs. all of which are treated by this manual. This knowledge covers the field performance records of different types of cables. on single-phase UD looped systems.16). Riser Pole Riser Pole T1 T6 Damaged Cable Section Legend Single-Phase. Having the two sources fed from different feeder circuits could cause unexpected high-power flow through the UD system if the sources were tied together during switching operations on the UD loop. UD SYSTEM RELIABILITY STUDY Well-designed UD systems can provide improved reliability relative to overhead systems. Transformer T5 Parking Stand Surge Arresters Surge Arresters Transformer T6 Parking Stand X3 X1 X2 To Ground Rod X3 X1 X2 To Ground Rod Copper Ground Conductor To T4 Cable Fault To Riser Plate Front View Showing Isolated. it is vitally important that both sources be connected to the same phase for safe operation. Transformer T4 Parking Stand Surge Arresters T2 T5 T4 X3 X1 X2 Copper Ground Conductor To T3 To Ground Rod To T5 FIGURE 1. This formed loop is opened at some point to allow use of radial overcurrent protection methods and to prevent unwanted power transfers through the cable.15). each cable run serving several pad-mounted transformers is connected with a power supply point on both ends (see Figure 1.O. if the overhead type of radial distribution system configuration were used for UD. Normally Open Point T3 N. If the cable fails. The damaged cable can then be repaired or replaced later without causing additional outage time. This difficulty is overcome by using loop-feed design for UD systems. . the proper application of surge arresters.

Difficult to access for operation and maintenance 3. operation and maintenance of the system can also be difficult. Often reduces outage time 4. Possible more economical installation if lots share rear property lines 1. The engineer needs to be aware of these problems when considering whether to place facilities along the front or rear property line and also must consider the effect of joint-use trench on operation and maintenance activities. installing the cable in conduit or installing a spare conduit allows the utility better access when cables have to be repaired or replaced.2 summarizes the advantages and disadvantages of front and rear property line placement. Consumers or developers will have some authority because they must normally give the utility an easement that allows the installation of underground facilities. In these areas. particularly when there is no service alley or backyards are fenced and have no access gate large enough to accommodate a trencher or backhoe. Consumers preference for equipment in backyard 2. As a result.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 7 1 Design Considerations for System Operation and Maintenance The cooperative’s involvement with a UD system does not end after installation. or consumer relations may require placement along the rear property line. it is much faster for utility crews to check for tripped fault indicators and to perform cable switching to isolate the faulted cable section. The engineer can be guided by this table in selecting the cable route. The installation cost also depends on the subdivision layout and the location of other underground utilities. More accessible for operation and maintenance 2. Potential for damage from vehicles appearance of the property so they prefer the utility to locate facilities along the rear property line instead of in front of their houses. For example. placement along the front property line is more advantageous. In most cases. Table 1. the cooperative must operate and maintain the system throughout its life. preparing the rear of the lot for cable installation can be more costly and time-consuming than preparing the front property line. Because many components of a UD system are difficult to access. Often the consumers or developers believe that pad-mounted equipment detracts from the TABLE 1. Location Placement along front property line Advantages 1. it is difficult to repair a faulted cable that is buried beneath landscaped areas or utility buildings. . Reduces cable replacement costs Placement along rear property line 1. the rear property line is not usually cleared of trees and may not be to final grade when cable is installed. A final consideration is the power restoration time following an outage. JOINT-USE TRENCH In some areas. More unsightly to consumer 2. this is a joint decision between the utility and the consumer or developer. it is difficult to access a pad-mounted transformer that is surrounded by shrubbery or located too close to fences or buildings. the different utilities usually maintain a minimum separation of 12 inches. Usually more accessible for installation 3. An economic comparison of front versus rear property line installation is covered later in this section under Economic Comparison of System Configurations.2: Front Versus Rear Property Line Placement. Usually higher cable replacement costs Disadvantages 1. the utilities may agree to place facilities in a common trench. the space allocated for underground utilities is very limited. Likewise. Often requires more tree/ brush clearing 2. equipment along the rear property line is usually difficult to access and thus difficult to operate and maintain. FRONT VERSUS REAR PROPERTY LINE PLACEMENT One of the fundamental choices in UD system design is whether to locate facilities along the front property line or along the rear property line. When facilities are located on the front property line. In these cases. The 2007 National Electrical Safety Code (NESC). subdivision layout. However. In addition. Greater potential for dig-ins 3. It is important that the utility engineer inform the consumer of this advantage of front-line placement. Usually. Within this common (joint-use) trench. the location of other utilities. Section 354. However.

Special backphone cables. If select backfill is required. the contract should define who is responsible for installing the facilities. Each utility will have to maintain its own facilities. The utility that opens the trench must abide by these dimensions. contains information on the NESC requirements and installation guidelines for joint-use trench. the cooperative should consider the potential for operational problems. Section 8 of this guide. NESC also has special requirements for bonding Fourth. This type of existing underground facilities trench requires telephone and often creates must be located. This contract would be similar to the conferable to a new owner. jacketed. If each utility installs its own facilities. telephone. To help structure these efforts and • Cost adders for select backfill. mistaken identity. the cooperative must prepare a contract for joint trench Fifth. Joint-occupancy trenches require tremendous • Penalties for temporarily covering or coordination and cooperation from each utility barricading an open trench. must identify who is responsito power cables. Direct-Buried System Design. If the other utilities receive proper notification but fail to send crews. which may require • Will the trench be closed or covered crossing other utilities to reach its facilities. Operational Precautions Before agreeing to share a common trench. the contract should stipulate any consequences. To temporarily? minimize the risk of damaging other facilities • Will the delinquent utility be charged? during excavation. of the easements and permits and cable television (CATV) Joint-use trench with before starting construction. tion concerns. the contract should address shared and grounding of electric. and involved. Second. It Third. The utility that opens the A joint-use trench with rantrench should require copies dom lay of electric. primary-voltage cable to have a ble for acquiring the backfill material and decide specific marking on its jacket. Typical Contractual Arrangements • Penalties for reopening a trench. then the contract needs to state the required notification period before opening and backfilling a trench. the contract should state who is reis also helpful to show the presence of joint-use sponsible for acquiring easements and any pertrench on the operating map for the area. particularly important for joint-use contracts with First. provide proper agreements on liability. The cables must fill and compaction needs be well marked to prevent must be addressed. These costs include the following: systems using random separation in Section 354D. mits. the contract should state that it is transuse. • Cost of the service if one utility installs all facilities. Grounding and bonding are discussed • Cost to open and close the trench. operation crews need a • Will a closed trench be reopened? drawing that shows a trench cross section and the location of all facilities within the trench. and CATV costs. the contract should address construcCATV utilities. telephone. This transferability is tract for joint pole use.1 8 – Se c t io n 1 1 does allow the random separation (less than 12 inches) of some utilities. This marking is how the additional cost will be shared among shown as Figure 350-1 in the 2007 NESC. further in Section 8. The the utilities. The contract CATV personnel to work next operating problems. cables creates additional operrandom separation Also before construction. Jacketed ble for requesting the location power cables resemble teleof these utilities. such as those below: . any ating problems. The NESC requires all directthe contract should identify the party responsiburied. It must state the required trench dimensions and arrangement of all utility lines.

need to refer to the eventually require three-phase power. Configurations subsection bein established yards also tends ginning on the next page. to create conflicts with property owners. To determine which systure changeouts. the enods are used. pensive than replacing direct-buried cable and Voltage conversion also requires an increase does not disturb the ground surface. The subsection immediately changeout at the time of voltage conversion. A three-phase feeder is often helpful for balancing a large amount of singleFUTURE VOLTAGE CONVERSIONS phase load and for providing better sectionalizMany utilities are converting to higher distribuing. Changes to a subdivision layout and the number of years besystem in established yards. However. the engineer needs to . level is increased. parking lots. To avoid fufor direct-buried cable. the utility must gineer needs to do an ecoalso restore the soil surface. or should provide for Conversions under the Ecopouring new concrete sidenomic Comparison of System walks or driveways. he should long-range work plan to locate those areas desconsider installing a three-phase feeder instead ignated for future voltage increases. thus. engineer should determine if a three-phase feeder is required. the cooperative can initially tem is more economical. This simple design change eliminates the need to replace all the underground primary voltage cable—a very expensive DIRECT-BURIED VERSUS and time-consuming task. The engineer can help avoid these problems THREE-PHASE VERSUS by planning for future conversions to three-phase SINGLE-PHASE INSTALLATION circuits and higher voltage levels. It is much easier to intems in these areas. in the insulation level of pad-mounted transthe initial installation costs are higher than those formers and sectionalizing devices. An economic evaluaPLACEMENT IN CONDUIT tion under the subsection Economic Comparison At some point. the cooperative will save money by initially inReplacing cable in a conduit system is less exstalling the higher voltage cable. Before making roadways are very expensive. For these types of subdivisions. imclubhouse or sewer lift station. require a system capacity. sign of a UD system by anticipating and providThe economics of these changes depend on the ing for future system upgrades. If trenching meththese design changes. presents an economic comcable and cable terminations that are rated for parison of an initial versus delayed installation the higher voltage level. the considering the use of conduit systems. The If the engineer thinks the subdivision will engineer will. These types of prove circuit voltage profile. These conversions are typically three-phase primary circuit. Trenching future upgrades.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 1 9 1 Future Upgrades and Replacements install dual-voltage transformers and sectionalizThe cooperative engineer can improve the deing devices rated for the higher voltage level. and increase loads are often three-phase and. nomic study similar to the one Such restoration could include A UD system design described in Future Voltage reseeding grass. or fore the voltage conversion. most cables need to be replaced of System Configurations (next page) shows that because of a cable failure or external damage. The future subdivision plans may show a tion system voltages to decrease line losses. the engineer needs to adapt stall three cables initially than to install one inithe design to minimize material and equipment tially and two later. titled Economic Comparison of SysA simple design change involves installing tem Configurations. following. These two components of a three-phase feeder. For UD sysof a single-phase feeder. The engineer can perwill operate properly at the lower voltage and form a similar economic comparison for the UD will not have to be changed when the voltage system he or she is designing. repaving. The engineer Most large subdivisions are developed in stages can also plan for future cable replacements by over time. scheduled to occur over an extended time. therefore.

00 237. Because an open-loop system always requires more materials than a similar radial system. an open-loop system requires additional underground facilities—at a minimum. The examples in this section use a carrying charge of 12 percent. therefore. Economics is not usually the deciding aspect when comparing different configurations. This evaluation is difficult because it must quantify the expected life of the cable. This assembly does not include the pole. Some of these economic evaluations compare only initial costs—the purchase cost of the materials and the installation cost for placing these materials into service. and Economics. Conduit systems may also require larger cable sizes to offset de-rating factors as a result of cable heating. when doing comparisons. and insurance. including loan interest. and replacement costs. The single-phase riser assembly listed in Table 1. and fused disconnect switches) for terminating underground cable on a riser pole. Economic decisions should be based on the cooperative’s own cost data and not on the costs shown in this subsection. Only a few examples consider an inflation rate. However. those listed in Table 1. an open-loop system provides better system availability than a comparable radial system does. the conduit system will be more difficult to repair. could help prolong cable life in areas with rocky soils or areas congested with other utilities.00 63.00 237. Economic Comparison of System Configurations To design an underground distribution system. being aware of the different system costs can help the cooperative engineer make economically sound design decisions. maintenance. A conduit system can provide some benefits that are difficult to assign a value to.00 $ 3. taxes. The following examples compare several system configurations and show suitable methods for calculating the relative economics of each. Evaluations that consider future costs require use of a carrying charge.00 2. The riser assembly in subsequent tables is defined in the same way. conduit use in rodent-infested areas will likely prolong cable life. Again.00 175. 25 kV Trench and Backfill 1/0 AWG A1.00 1. This table also shows the additional costs of these materials. the examples should be used as guidelines only. System maintenance and operation.250. If a dig-in should occur.500. A conduit system does provide some mechanical protection to the cable and. Additional Quantity 1 500 ft 500 ft 1 1 1 TOTAL Installed Unit Cost $ 460. The carrying charges are annual payments needed to support construction funds. The installed-material costs used in these examples can vary significantly from region to region. TABLE 1. Points of comparison include the following: • • • • Service reliability. 25-kV Underground Cable Elbow Terminator Elbow Arrester Feed-Through Standoff . LOOP VERSUS RADIAL As noted earlier in this section. Conduit can also protect cable from gophers and prairie dogs. an appropriate value needs to be selected. surge arresters.00 3.00 1. therefore. However.685. Other evaluations consider initial and future costs—operating. the cooperative engineer needs to compare various system configurations.50 63. Present and future load requirements. The inflation rate used is three percent per year and is not included in the carrying charges. In the following examples.3: Additional Materials for an Open-Loop System.3 includes all materials (conduit.00 Item Single-Phase Riser Assembly. however.00 Installed Total Cost $ 460.3. the initial cost is greater than that of a radial system. Therefore. However. a carrying charge should be selected appropriate to current economics.00 175. this cost difference is calculated for several types of underground systems. cable terminations.2 0 – Se c t i on 1 1 perform an analysis similar to the one described later in the Direct-Buried Versus Cable in Conduit subsection.

most subdivision layouts can be easily adapted to the installation of an open-loop system by extending the underground cable from the last transformer to a second riser pole or underground feeder source. 37-Lot Subdivision. . OL DC AS 50 50 AY ' KW 520 560' 50 50 460' 50 460' 50 kVA 50 0' ROW NEW DOVER ROAD 400' 50 400' 50 400' 37. so the project cost would be $100.685.17: Open-Loop System.000 for a radial system. Pad-Mounted Transformer Single-Phase. Single Residential Consumer It is usually practical to install an open-loop system for a subdivision. The approximate cost for a radial system is $37. UD Cable Three-Phase Overhead Line N.O. the cooperative will spend $13. For example. with a levelized annual cost of only $5. For example. As noted. about $1.685. the cooperative can provide a more reliable system with an additional investment of 10 percent or less.85 per lot.40 a year for each consumer in the subdivision. The cost for installing underground facilities will also be similar. a 37-lot subdivision is shown in Figure 1. consider a 560' N.145. power can be restored to these consumers much faster on an open-loop system than on a radial system.3. However. To illustrate this. In contrast. Assuming a carrying charge of 12 percent and an amortization period of 20 years. If an open-loop system can be established with 500 or fewer feet of cable. consider a 100-lot subdivision with lot sizes similar to those in Figure 1.5 28 5' Legend Single-Phase. Normally Open Point ROW ROW SR 14 35 (1 00' R OW) ROW FIGURE 1. This improvement will increase consumer satisfaction and promotes a better relationship between the cooperative and the consumer. the cost is $36. This incremental cost for an open-loop system could decrease considerably for a large subdivision.40 per lot. instead of $100 per lot. Primary Voltage. this $100 investment has a levelized annual cost of $13.17. This increases the project cost by $3. an additional cost of approximately $100 per lot. The additional materials for an open-loop system are highlighted and are consistent with those listed in Table 1. an open-loop system to serve a single residential consumer may not be practical. In both of these examples.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 2 1 1 Subdivisions Subdivisions usually have a high consumer density.O. To provide a more reliable electric system through a loop design.000 per lot. then the additional cost remains $3. Fortunately. A cable failure here can interrupt power to many consumers.20 per consumer.17.

and a spare-cable system The example in Table 1. If the transformer is serving six consumers. Factors entering into this decision should include the type of customer and the difficulty of effecting repairs in a timely manner. TABLE 1. then the cost drops to $614 per consumer for an open-loop system. which is 41 percent of the total project cost.5 considers a 500-foot radial feed to a 300-kVA pad-mounted transformer.50 63. O. Additional Quantity 500 ft 1 1 1 1 1 1 Installed Unit Cost $ 2.250. As a guideline for this evaluation.00 237. the cost is divided among more consumers. Figure 1.18 has two separate trenches.18 shows this radial system and also highlights the materials required for an open-loop system. 500’ Riser Pole 500’ Riser Pole Legend Single-Phase.953.2 2 – Se c t i on 1 1 single residential consumer served by 500 feet of 1/0 AWG Al primary underground cable. For this reason.00 175. Here. Single Residential Consumer.00 89.00 73.00 63.00 73. there is not a single simple example to show an economic comparison of a loop versus radial system. Because the spare cable is in the same ditch as the normal feed cable. the cooperative engineer needs to examine each case to determine the cost of the desired level of reliability. Pad-Mounted Transformer Single-Phase. This reduces the additional cost to $1.D.O.00 237. The openloop system in Figure 1. both cables are exposed to simultaneous damage during a dig-in. The radial system costs $4.685. Likewise. Although the cost for an open-loop or spare-cable system will be the same. a substantial increase over the 10 percent additional cost for the subdivision.00 175. UD Cable N. Termination Cutout Riser Pole Arrester TOTAL Note. the following example will compare the costs of a radial system. This system provides a 277/480-Volt four-wire N.3. For these situations.O. a single transformer may serve several consumers. the cooperative must decide if the benefits of improved reliability make the open-loop or spare-cable system a practical choice. ranging from small single-phase consumers to large three-phase consumers.00 Installed Total Cost $ 1. 25-kV Underground Cable Elbow Terminator Feed-Through Standoff Elbow Arrester 25-kV O. Conversion to an open-loop system requires the same materials listed in Table 1.00 66. Single Residential Consumer.792. Instead. a dig-in will usually damage only one cable. Commercial Consumers Commercial consumers are a very diverse group.4. Normally Open Point FIGURE 1. placing both cables in the same riser exposes both cables to damage whenever the pole is damaged. A more economical system for a single customer would be a spare cable placed in the same trench and on the same riser pole.953. Primary Voltage.00 $ 1. The cost of a spare cable with terminations and arresters is shown in Table 1.00 Item 1/0 AWG A1.18: Open-Loop System. an open-loop system costs an additional 77 percent of the cost of the radial system.00 89. therefore. this system is less reliable than is an open-loop system with separate trenches.4: Sample Spare Cable Cost. and $326 per consumer for a spare-cable system.00 66. = outside diameter . However. Instead of serving only one consumer.D. an open-loop system. at a cost of $3.

a second trench.007/225 kW = $35.00 189.5: Sample Radial System Cost. The spare cable has terminations and arresters at each end.22/kW $8. Therefore. or damage to the riser pole. in addition to the spare cable installation. Table 1. For purposes of comparison.522.00 364.00 3. each single residential consumer is assumed to have a peak (non-diversified) load of 15 kW.5 times that for the residential consumer in a small subdivision.953/15 kW = $130.86/kW instead of $35.505.00 237. assume this three-phase installation has a load of 225 kW and the 37-lot subdivision has a diversified load of 7 kW per lot for a total of 259 kW. However. Other Options to Consider In addition to an open-loop design and spare cable design.00 6. These options.953/225 kW = $8.332.00 171. an open-loop system for several three-phase consumers is more practical than is an open-loop system for a single three-phase consumer.00 Item Three-Phase Riser Assembly.505. a single residential installation costs nearly 15 times as much per kilowatt.332. Consumer Type Residential Commercial Open-Loop System $3.4-kV – 480/277-V. Providing an open-loop system for the single commercial consumer costs 2. this system is less reliable than an open-loop system because the spare cable could be damaged by a fault in an adjacent cable. other options may be considered for service to particular consumers or for some cooperatives whose underground installation environment requires other strategies. the likelihood of future paving over the cable route.6: Additional Cost Per Kilowatt.9/14.5 shows the cost of a radial system to be $14. Instead of 55 percent. The cost of this option is $1. of course. An open-loop system requires an additional riser assembly.750. 300-kVA Transformer Elbow Terminator Elbow Arrester Bushing Inserts Transformer Pad TOTAL Quantity 1 500 ft 1.00 711.00 3. a dig-in.00 Installed Total Cost $ 1.685/259 kW = $14.00 57. These additional materials will cost $8. As noted before.59/kW. This would. or to install a cable-in-conduit system for selected installations. An open-loop system that serves three 225-kW deliveries has an additional cost of $11.522.00 $ 14. service to a three-phase consumer.500. and the rock or debris content of the primary cable route excavation. then the additional cost per kilowatt would decrease. and a separate three-phase run of underground primary cable.00 364. .68/kW It is often helpful to consider the cost per kilowatt (kW).00 1. this option is only a 13 percent increase over the radial cost. 25 kV Trench and Backfill 1/0 AWG A1. Doing so also provides a way to compare residential and commercial costs. If the open-loop three-phase system serves several commercial consumers. for the installation of a spare cable. it may be economically prudent to install the primary cable in duct to a single commercial or residential customer to simplify cable replacement in case of failure. *Spare cable system usually practical only for single transformer installations.00 2. depend on the length of the primary cable lateral.6 compares the added cost per kilowatt for installing an open-loop system and a spare cable system. Installed Unit Cost $ 1. Table 1.007.50 6. 25-kV Underground Cable 24. as shown in Table 1. may be the most economical in the long-term because retrenching a cable route after the site has developed is many times more expensive that the original trenching. A second option places one spare cable in the same trench as the radial feed. In some cases. but would be useful if one phase of the circuit faulted. A similar strategy would be to place an empty capped duct alongside the primary cable in the trench. This single spare cable does not provide total redundancy for the three-phase cable.59/kW Spare Cable System* $1. thus increasing the radial system cost by 55 percent.500 ft 1 3 3 3 1 TABLE 1.00 63. For example. Commercial Consumer. Open-Loop and Spare Cable Systems.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 2 3 1 TABLE 1.953.02/kW $1.4.

600-foot underground sub-feeder of 1/0 AWG A1 25-kV cable.94 per foot.50 2.216. TABLE 1. or $9.8 shows these costs. .00 4. UD Cable .2 4 – Se c t i on 1 1 BRIDG NE OL DC W RM YA OU Y WA TH WAY EHAM DC T. Although economics is not the only deciding factor.600.800.and three-phase systems.00 217. and • Sectionalizing and protection requirements. Table 1.10 per foot.00 AY KW AS ELM EA ST NEW DOVER ROAD IP IP ROW Riser Pole Legend IP Riser Pole ROW ROW SR 1 435 (1 00' R OW) ROW Single-Phase Sectionalizing Cabinet 1/0 AWG.00 2. it is useful to know the cost difference between installing single. As an example. a three-phase sub-feeder is 2.20 shows a three-phase sub-feeder with two three-phase sectionalizing cabinets. This cabinet costs about $2.6 times the cost of a single-phase sub-feeder.00 528. 25-kV Underground Cable Single-Phase Sectionalizing Cabinet Cabinet Pad 1/0 AWG Terminations TOTAL Quantity 2 1.608.000. For this example.00 $ 15. • Load balancing. as shown in Table 1. Item Single-Phase Riser Assembly. The three-phase sectionalizing cabinet has three-phase group-operated switches on the incoming and outgoing subfeeder cables. The cost for a similar three-phase sub-feeder increases considerably. This cabinet costs $10.898. 25-kV.600 ft 1. Figure 1.752 or $26. 25 kV Trench and Backfill 1/0 AWG A1. consider a 1.000. CHARINGTON CT. The sectionalizing cabinet allows the sub-feeder to feed through and also provides two fused taps.00 4.00 Installed Total Cost $ 920.600 ft 2 2 8 THREE-PHASE VERSUS SINGLE-PHASE The decision to install three-phase facilities instead of single-phase is usually based on the following: • Three-phase load requirements. It also has two sets of three-phase fused taps. Installed Unit Cost $ 460.7.19: Single-Phase Sub-Feeder.898. se Pha o Tw FIGURE 1.00 3. Figure 1.00 66.7: Single-Phase Sub-Feeder Cost.00 434. The total project cost is $15. and the total project cost is $41.19 shows a single-phase sub-feeder with two single-phase sectionalizing cabinets.00 5.

8: Three-Phase Sub-Feeder Cost. The delayed installation of the underground three-phase line will require trenching in established (landscaped) yards.00 400. the conversion of the feeder will require consumer outages that would have been avoided if the three-phase installation had .432. Item Three-Phase Riser Assembly.00 2. 25-kV. an increase of $5 per foot over the cost shown in Table 1.8.00 4. se Pha o Tw FIGURE 1. The cooperative must remove sod and obstructions (fences. and utility buildings) before trenching.332.127.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 2 5 1 BRIDG NE OL DC W RM YA OU Y WA TH WAY EHAM DC T. With a carrying charge of 12 percent.00 20. However.00 12.000. After trenching. this cost has a present worth of $28. All this work increases the trenching cost from $3 per foot to $8 per foot.50 10. TABLE 1. This cost added to the cost of a single-phase sub-feeder adds up to a present worth of $44.00 $ 41. These results show that initially installing a three-phase sub-feeder costs less than does delaying the three-phase installation. shrubbery. if future development plans may require the addition of a three-phase feeder along the same route within a few years. the trench and backfill cost increases by $8.600 ft 4. 25-kV Underground Cable Three-Phase Sectionalizing Cabinet Cabinet Pad 1/0 AWG Terminations This comparison rather conclusively demonstrates that the decision to install a three-phase sub-feeder should not be made lightly.20: Three-Phase Sub-Feeder. Therefore.229. Assume a three-phase feeder is installed five years after the single-phase feeder is installed. the comparison changes dramatically. and the total future cost to install this three-phase feeder is $49. UD Cable . Trenching in an established yard is very costly.664.000. In addition.00 3.00 1.752. Additional Quantity 2 1.800 ft 2 2 16 TOTAL Installed Unit Cost $ 1. CHARINGTON CT. 25 kV Trench and Backfill 1/0 AWG A1. the cooperative will need to replace sod or reseed. The trenching cost is $8 per foot.800.00 66.216.00 Installed Total Cost $ 2.00 800.00 AY KW AS ELM EA ST NEW DOVER ROAD 3P 3P ROW Riser Pole Legend 3P Riser Pole ROW ROW SR 14 35 (1 00' R OW) ROW Single-Phase Sectionalizing Cabinet 1/0 AWG.056.752.

Doing so does increase the initial material cost over that for 15-kV cable and components.59/ft $ 12. Pad-mounted transformers. Table 1. Sectionalizing equipment. 7. it is generally advisable to install a cable suitable for any distribution voltage expected for the area. 25-kV Unit Cost $ 1.00 414.28/ft $ 36. 14.4-kV Transformer TOTAL Labor Cost $ 94. the labor cost remains the same.00 216.00 $ 2. Recent surveys show that the labor for cable replacement often costs $8 per foot or more.5-kVA.888.00 30. it is wise to install 25-kV instead of 15-kV cable.00 94.344.00 Item 1/0 AWG A1 Underground Cable Elbow Terminator Bushing Insert Riser Terminator Quantity 4. Transformer bushing well inserts.147. Determining the future value of this additional investment requires use of a compound amount factor.5-kVA.9: 25-kV Versus 15-kV Cable and Components.00 TOTAL 15-kV Unit Cost $ 1.00 $ 10.11: Voltage Conversion Cost at Year 10.00) (439.4-kV Transformer 37. 25-kV Unit Cost $ 2. • • • • • TABLE 1.10: Added Cost of Dual-Voltage Transformers. FUTURE VOLTAGE CONVERSION Conversion to a higher distribution system voltage requires an increase in the insulation Where a future voltage conversion is possible.00 $ 282.00 Unit Cost Increase $ 233.00 1.574.2-kV Transformer 37. In light of the relatively low incremental cost for higher voltage cables and accessories.00 25. However.393.00) 13.00 . level of system components.00 94.00 283. Unit Salvage $ (580.00 1.00) — — Quantity Installed Removed — — 8 1 8 1 — — Total Cost Increase $ (3. consider the 37-lot subdivision of Figure 1. 25-kV cable and terminations could be installed initially.9 shows the increase in material cost to be $3.525.00 $ 3.69/ft $ 24.00) (533. if future loads may require a three-phase sub-feeder. For an economic analysis. Therefore.17.00 0.066.00 48.00 Unit Cost Increase $ 0.017.00 Unit Cost $ 0.2-kV Transformer 50-kVA.00 Item 50-kVA Transformer 37.00 0.00 23.5-kVA Transformer Quantity 8 1 TABLE 1.387.00 1.00 Total Cost Increase $ 2. In an attempt to avoid the excessive cost of cable replacement.75 per foot.349. and • Surge arresters.00 1.00 Item 50-kVA. or $0.2 6 – Se c t i on 1 1 been made initially.864.636.00 Total Cost Increase $ 1.00 TOTAL 15-kV Unit Cost $ 1.00 0.045 ft 18 18 2 TABLE 1.619. For an underground distribution system.00 1.017. Cable terminators.160. 14.00 94.00 30. 7. The changeout of these components at the time of voltage conversion is very expensive and requires either a long outage or a series of shorter outages. This is particularly true of cable replacement in established subdivisions. these components are the following: Underground primary cable. the cooperative should strongly consider installing it as part of the initial installation.

If is very unlikely that this amount will cover even a voltage conversion is planned within 10 years the purchase cost of the cable in 10 years.017 has a future value of cal to change out the transformers in the future $3. as shown in Table 1. ples show a method to compare the cost of Determining the present worth of this total refront-lot versus rear-lot placement of facilities. quires a present worth factor. The following examcent salvage on the removed transformers.00 $ (348. The 37-lot subdivision of TABLE 1. amount is approximately equal to the present These economic analyses show that it is imcost of 1/0 AWG Al.347 has a present worth of $1.12: Voltage Conversion Cost at Year 20.992.11 shows the line.695. Howthe utility often disagree about placement of elecever.00) makes it the economical Transformer choice.147.425.4-kV 115. which 50-kVA.10 and 1. 14.10. ing better reliability. The transformer changeyears and a carrying charge of 12 percent.017 × 3. In contrast.017 has a future value of $3. the voltage conversion is possible.12 shows a similar Transformer analysis for a voltage conversion at 20 years instead of 50-kVA.2-kV transformers.00) — 1 (205. the total cilities along the front property line where they material cost increase for installing dual-voltage are easier to maintain and operate.877.347.00) Table 1. the labor cost to install either transformer tric facilities. consumers often Again. Table 1. For a carrying charge of 12 percent.00 0. 14. the transsubdivision lot layout. For conversions occur9.4-kV 115. the present worth facIf one assumes a voltage conversion in 10 tor at 20 years is 0.00 year and the salvage value on Transformer the removed transformers is TOTAL $ 16.1058. To see if dual-voltreplacement.424. consider a voltage conversion 10 years prefer placing facilities along the rear property after the initial installation. For a of the initial installation. Therefore. the cooperative should install is less than the present labor cost ($8) for cable 25-kV cable and components. it is more economiinvestment of $3. the out cost of $16. . 25-kV underground cable.00 1. For a carrying The economics of front versus rear placecharge of 12 percent and a conversion at 10 ment will vary significantly depending on the years.12.2-kV 115. This rather than install dual-voltage transformers. The utility often prefers to place fais the same. then the cooperative voltage conversion in 20 years. installing 25-kV cooperative engineer will need to do an analysis cable instead of 15-kV cable is a wise investment. It portant to plan for future voltage conversions. compound amount factor is 3. The assumed inflaTransformer tion rate is three percent per 37. For the 37-lot subdivision.6463 = $29.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 2 7 1 former changeout cost of $10.2-kV $ 115.864. this factor is 0. cost is altion rate of three percent per year and a 50 perways an aspect to consider. in areas where a future age transformers are economically feasible. The initial On the basis of this analysis.00 $ 0.1037. similar to that shown in Tables 1. be solved cost at the time of conversion assuming an inflaby an economic analysis.00 (320.00 10 years. or $7.147. This conflict will rarely.32 per foot.00 — 1 — 1. 37. or $2. 25-kV components. Another option to consider is installing dualvoltage transformers along with the 25-kV cable FRONT VERSUS REAR PROPERTY and components.5-kVA. This amount ring after 10 years.00 — 8 — 16. The dual-voltage transformers are As covered earlier in this section. The present worth Quantity Unit Total Cost of installing dual-voltage Item Labor Cost Unit Cost Salvage Installed Removed Increase transformers is $2.00 30 percent.370. if ever. Therefore.322.1058 = $9. thus providtransformers is $2. the initial investshould install 25-kV cable.00) — 8 $ (1. However. 7. consumers and more costly than the 7.017 × dual-voltage transformers.19 per foot. 7. and ment of $3.103.00 1.636 has a present worth of $3.938.5-kVA.

' 605 400 ' ELM EA ST DC CHARINGTON CT.5 ' S ELM A TE DC T. UD Cable 600-V Service Cable FIGURE 1. 640 5 37. Pad-Mounted Transformer ROW ROW SR 14 DC AS AY KW 50 160 ' 180' 240 37.22: Back Property Placement. Pad-Mounted Transformer ROW ROW SR 14 DC AY KW AS T. ' 420' 50 NEW DOVER ROAD 50 ROW OW) 35 (1 00' R ROW .2 8 – Se c t i on 1 1 BRIDG NE OL W R YA 50 MO AY HW UT 605 ’ EHAM WAY 50 5 37. UD Cable 600-V Service Cable FIGURE 1. BRIDG NE OL W R YA MO AY HW UT EHAM WAY ' 300 75 75 CHARINGTON CT. 400' 50 NEW DOVER ROAD ROW OW) 35 (1 00' R ROW .21: Front Property Placement. Legend Single-Phase. . 400' Legend Single-Phase. 1/0 AWG. 1/0 AWG. 25-kV. 25-kV.

front-line placement is a practical choice. PVC rigid conduit with high-density polyethylene (HDPE) flexible cable in conduit. Restore Surface. then the 25-year cost is $10(1. Much of this cable is direct buried.17 shows front-lot placement.13 change to $88. In contrast.185) = $25.00 per foot × 1. Tables 1. and $96. the single payment present worth factor from standard tables for 25 years is 0.0588 and for 30 years is 0.90) at 30 years These costs are shown in Table 1. Cost savings are tremendous.90) = $19.0334. For example.0588($20. This long-term analysis includes an inflation rate of three percent per year. a small change in the cost for cable replacement can affect the economic choice. In addition. Calculating the installed project cost is straightforward.20 per foot ($8. Because the price of conduit and cable fluctuates.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 2 9 1 Figure 1. it is important that the cooperative engineer perform an economic analysis based on this example but using current costs. Because subdivision layouts differ. When the cable is in a conduit system. placement along the rear property lines requires less cable and fewer transformers. however. and homeowner obstacles.22. Both of these methods are expensive: • Trench and backfill labor costs are about $8 per foot.15 show the present.50 per foot.069 at 30 years. the total values in Table 1. the 25. if the cost to replace direct-buried cable is $10 per foot instead of $8 per foot. For cable replacement at 30 years.16 summarizes the present worth for each option. • Long-distance boring costs are about $9 to $10 per foot. the cost to replace direct-buried cable will be as follows: $14. If $8 per foot is not reasonable. One way to reduce these cable replacement costs is to install cable in a conduit system. .505 at 25 years. With this type of lot arrangement. a flexible conduit system has the lowest present worth and is the most economical choice.862 $24. The following example compares the cost of direct-buried. it is impossible to set a dollar amount on the reliability and operational convenience gained by placing facilities along the front-lot lines.924) = $25. However. Figures 1. a direct-buried system is the most economical. or 75 percent.407 Table 1. other utility congestion.00 per foot ($8.13 as Trench. and 30-year replacement costs for the three options. For this type of subdivision. As a result.17 and 1. To replace it will require opening a new trench or tunneling with long-distance boring equipment.22 show a subdivision where lots share back property lines. These costs will vary significantly depending on soil conditions. the engineer needs to insert an appropriate cost. For a carrying charge of 12 percent.and 30-year replacement costs are the following: $24. For this particular subdivision. placement along the rear lot lines will actually require more cable and increase the total project cost. These extra materials increase the project cost by $11.496.675 + . an accurate comparison of costs requires a case-by-case study. Most subdivisions will be a combination of the two extremes shown in Figures 1.21 and 1.17. For cable replacement at 25 years.00 per foot. and the 30-year cost is $10(1. 1. This example uses the 37-lot subdivision of Figure 1. landscape. The soil does not have to be disturbed and other utilities do not have to be located and avoided.14. for HDPE flexible conduit.886 additional feet of cable and one additional padmounted transformer. and 1. In this particular example. the cost for replacement of direct-buried cable will vary greatly.13.75) at 25 years $15. placement along the front property line requires 1. the replacement cost is the cost of pulling out the failed cable and pulling in the new cable plus the cost of the new cable. A present worth factor needs to be used to compare these three options. Thus. 25-year replacement. DIRECT-BURIED VERSUS CABLE IN CONDUIT Many utilities are now replacing underground cable that was installed only 15 to 20 years ago. For example. Therefore.675 + .75) = $17. it is difficult to calculate the cost advantage of operating and maintaining facilities along the front-lot lines.0334($21. Backfill.00 per foot × 1.

00 18. select .135.405.045 ft 4. Item Trench and Backfill Present Cost 1/0 AWG A1.00 $ 1.248 + . 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL Remove Cable From Duct 30-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1.14: Option 2—PVC Rigid Conduit. Item Trench and Backfill Present Cost 2-Inch Conduit 1/0 AWG A1. Therefore.00 19.00 $ 74.045 ft Unit Installed Cost $ 3. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL Remove Cable From Duct 25-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1.55/ft Quantity 4.270.214. If the soil is rocky. select fill material must be used for a two-inch minimum of cable bedding and a fourinch cable cover.00/ft 2.922. Restore Surface 25-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1.44/ft 4.045 ft 4.045 ft $ 0. In this case.00 $ 1. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL 4. these values result in a present worth of $22. Backfill.248.20/ft 4.045 ft 4.045 ft 4.00 $ 80.045 ft $ 15.75/ft 4. in most cases. this economic analysis could not assign a monetary value to the following: • Consumer inconvenience and irritation that results from trenching across established lawns.00 TABLE 1.069) = $25.3 0 – Se c t i on 1 1 TABLE 1.00/ft 4. The cost of this select fill material can substantially increase the initial project cost for a direct-buried system.924.484.00 $ 10.045 ft $ 14.13: Option 1—Direct-Buried Cable.00 $ 21.630.00 6.045 ft Unit Installed Cost $ 3. Restore Surface 30-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1. protects the cable from rocky soils.00 For the 30-year replacement.942.0334($96. and • Added cable protection provided by a conduit system.00 $ 61. Backfill.00/ft 1.94/ft 4.50/ft Total Installed Cost $ 12.457.55/ft 2. it is important for the engineer to select an appropriate cable replacement cost for the economic analysis.135.60/ft Total Installed Cost $ 12. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL Trench.045 ft $ 0.780.48/ft 4. Of course.045 ft 4.00 $ 28.045 ft 4. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL 4. it is not suitable for backfill of a direct-buried cable.347. flexible or rigid.698.00 19.517.38/ft Quantity 4.982.00 $ 56.185.00 $ 20.717. the flexible conduit is the economical choice for replacement at 30 years. the use of a conduit system.00 17. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL Trench. For this reason.00 10.113. In contrast.045 ft 4. Another consideration for this analysis is the type of native soil.00 $ 22.

94/ft 4. each cooperative will need to conduct a similar analysis using its cost data.00/ft 3.23: Methods for Providing Secondary Service.00 30.045 ft $ 0. Although this analysis is based on a small 37-lot subdivision. surface restoration. The prices for conduit.00 TABLE 1.924. A cable fault on the secondary cable will interrupt power to multiple consumers. Therefore.00 19.185.15: Option 3—Cable in HDPE Flexible Conduit.48/ft 4. Item Trench and Backfill Present Cost Cable in Conduit TOTAL Remove Cable From Duct 25-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1.00 $ 21. the results show that a conduit system can be an economical choice.045 ft $ 0.00 30-Year Replacement $ 24.407.109.135. The arrangement that uses a secondary pedestal is less reliable than direct service from the transformer. In contrast. Adverse soil conditions can quickly shift system economics to favor conduit installations.00 $ 24.00 25.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 1 1 TABLE 1.00 18.540.00 12.00 $ 1. trenching. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL 4.942.00 get accurate results. Present Worth Installation Method Direct Buried PVC Rigid Conduit HDPE Flexible Conduit 25-Year Replacement $ 26.654.620. This analysis compares the initial installation cost only.16: Present Worth of Cable Installation Options.00 25. and longdistance boring vary from region to region. a cable fault on an individual service will interrupt power to that consumer only.405. Service may be provided directly from the transformer or from a secondary pedestal.00 $ 1. Figure 1. 25-kV Underground Cable TOTAL Remove Cable From Duct 30-Year Replacement 1/0 AWG A1.55/ft Quantity 4. the initial project cost for the two conduit systems will not increase.943.045 ft 4.045 ft Unit Installed Cost $ 3.23 shows both methods. . Table 1.982.10/ft Total Installed Cost $ 12.780.00 $ 20.00 29. SEPARATE SERVICES VERSUS SECONDARY PEDESTALS In a residential subdivision.045 ft 4.045 ft 4.17 lists the cost of providing separate services as shown in method A of backfill is not required. a single pad-mounted transformer often provides electrical service to several consumers.862.675.44/ft 4. To Secondary Pedestal 200’ 150’ Transformer 4/0 4/0 250’ Transformer #6 150’ 50 10’ 4/0 ’ #6 50 ’ 4/0 4/0 Method A—Seperate Services Method B—Secondary Pedestal FIGURE 1.

00/ft 1. per kW per month at a 100 percent ratchet. Cooperative Association’s of load-dependent losses when Distribution System Loss their peak value is known. Load-dependent demand costs and accumulated losses change with the square annual energy costs. the Distribution the system requires that this expense be known System Loss Management Manual provides cost and evaluated. 600-V Triplexed Cable TABLE 1.00 50. For UD cables. Quantity (ft) 300 300 10 1 3 TOTAL Installed Unit Cost $ 3.23 shows the use of a secondary pedestal. As this example shows. A quantity eratives is contained in the referred to as a loss factor is most power loss is National Rural Electric used to estimate the average load dependent.25/ft 172. Management Manual A value of 0.450. The separate services do share a common trench along the front property line.00 500. Item Trench and Backfill 4/0. figures for a typical cooperative. However.00 $ 1.00/ft 1. The cost of losses is Non-load-dependent losses are constant as derived from a combination of peak-load long as the cable is energized. is suggested as typical for . 600-V Triplexed Cable No.25/ft 0.00 2.50 172.491. A thorof the loading level.23. 600-V Triplexed Cable No.17: Separate Service Cables.3 (30 percent) (NRECA Research Project 90-7). and most of the loss is load-dependent.00 Installed Total Cost $ 900. loss becomes significant.00 $ 1. 6. This cost is shown in Table 1. the use of a secondary pedestal across the road from the transformer may be the economical choice since it requires trenching or tunneling across the road in only one location.00 Item Trench and Backfill 4/0.00 42. losses and their costs to cooptheir average level. Quantity (ft) 300 400 200 TOTAL Installed Unit Cost $ 3.00 14. Optimal economic design of distribution primary lines.00 375. the use of separate service cables is often the economical choice for lots located on the same side of the road as the transformer if the lots are developed at the same time. 600-V Triplexed Cable Secondary Pedestal Insulated Connectors UD Loss Economics The inevitable loss of some of the power delivCOST OF LOSSES ered through underground cables is an expense In a sample analysis of the cost of losses on for the cooperative.50 Figure 1.25/ft 0.18.18: Secondary Pedestal. Method B of Figure 1. it is only in the wholesale energy rate is $0.25/ft Installed Total Cost $ 900.03 per kilowattunusual circumstances that non-load-dependent hour (kWh). The sample Cable losses are classified as either load-decooperative purchases wholesale power at $10 pendent or non-load-dependent. 6. which ough coverage of the types of makes it difficult to determine For UD cables.3 2 – Se c t i on 1 1 TABLE 1.

in mils.760 hours × $0. For a run of three-phase cable. in ohms per kilofoot (kft) L = Circuit length. in amperes R = Phase conductor resistance.03/kWh = $263/kW Annual Energy Cost per kW of Load-Dependent Peak Losses 0. The cost per peak kilowatt for line losses for the sample cooperative is then determined as follows: losses are calculated by the formula shown in Equation 1. Primary Cable Conductor Losses The losses resulting from load current interacting with the conductor resistance (I2R losses) are by far the most significant losses in primary UD cables.2 The resulting expense per kilowatt of loss can be used to quickly estimate the savings that will result from using UD designs that operate at lower losses. in kft Sheath reactance.3 × 860 hours × $0. losses occur in the conductor. in watts I = Load current. The flow of this current produces a small loss in the sheaths. and as a result of cable charging current. for equilaterally spaced cables rM = Mean radius. in ohms per kft Circuit length. sheath. The loss savings can be compared with the annual carrying charges on the extra investment costs required to achieve lower losses. these WS = where: WS = I = RS = L = XM = 3 I2 RS L X2M R2S + X2M Total sheath loss. When this is done on three-phase cable runs. For a primary UD cable. in ohms per kft S = Center-to-center spacing. XM is determined using Equation 1. Primary Cable Sheath Losses The normal UD practice is to ground cable sheaths at both ends. in amperes Sheath resistance.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 3 1 primary distribution lines when calculating loss factors. in watts Load current.1 WR=3 I2 R L where: WR = Total loss. This type of economic comparison is discussed in detail in the Distribution System Loss Management Manual. calculated as shown in Equation 1. in mils.3. in kft Equation 1. in ohms per kft Equation 1. to the sheath for each cable . Annual Demand Cost per kW of Peak Losses $10/kW/month × 12 months = $120/kW Annual Energy Cost per kW of Non-Load-Dependent Peak Losses 8.3 XM = 0. CABLE SYSTEM LOSSES An essential step in the economic evaluation of losses is calculating the expected electrical losses for alternative designs. a small amount of circulating current will be induced in the cable sheaths.03/kWh = $79/kW Total Annual Cost per kW of Non-Load-Dependent Peak Losses $120/kW + $263/kW = $383/kW Total Annual Cost per kW of Load-Dependent Peak Losses $120/kW + $79/kW = $199/kW Equation 1.1.05292 log10 S rM where: XM = Sheath reactance. and dielectric.2.

and resistance are known from the system or can Primary Cable Dielectric Losses Voltage stress on cable insulation produces a slight heating effect that leads to power losses. Dielectric losses are a consequence of the cable being energized and are.6. in watts R = Phase conductor resistance. in mils D = Conductor diameter. in kft Data for Cable Loss Calculations Many items of technical data are needed on the cables involved to calculate losses from the above formulas. Basic electrical data such as voltage. Primary Cable Charging-Current Losses The capacitance of an underground cable draws charging current that interacts with the conductor resistance to produce a small loss. whereas the more common use of the term loss factor deals with losses due to the resistance of the conductor and.000377 C E where: IC = Charging current. Equation 1. therefore.7. amperes. Cable engineers refer to the product εt cosφ as the cable loss factor.5 C= 7. continuous. This use of the term loss factor is completely different from the use of loss factor earlier in this section. in nF per kft E = Line-to-ground operating voltage. If the cable is delivering current to low power factor load. in mils D = Conductor diameter. The formula in Equation 1. The procedure for calculating charging-current losses begins with determining the cable capacitance per phase with Equation 1. vary with the magnitude of the load being carried by the cable. in watts E = Line-to-ground operating voltage.4. These dielectric losses can be calculated using Equation 1. Physical measurements such as diameter and insulation thickness are usually shown on manufacturers’ catalog sheets. in mils where: C = Cable capacitance. chargingcurrent losses are of concern for only unloaded cables or those carrying unity power factor loads. the charging-current loss is calculated as shown in Equation 1. Therefore. per unit T = Insulation thickness.3 4 – Se c t i on 1 1 Equation 1. in kV L = Circuit length. in amperes per kft C = Cable capacitance. in nanoFarads (nF) per kft εt = Dielectric constant of the insulation T = Insulation thickness.6 IC = 0.7 WC = R I2C L3 where: WC = Total three-phase charging current loss. the charging current will be beneficial because its leading nature will cancel out some of the lagging load current. Equation 1.4 shows that dielectric losses are directly proportional to the product of εt and cosφ. in amperes per kft L = Circuit length.354 εt log10 2T+D D where: WD = Total three-phase dielectric loss. in ohms per kft IC = Charging current. in mils Next. therefore.5.28 E2 L εt cosφ log10 2T+D D Equation 1. in kft = Dielectric constant of the insulation εt cosφ = Insulation power factor. .4 WD = 8. in kV Finally. charging current per kilofoot of cable length is calculated with Equation 1.

7 715 0.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1.60 2.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1. The spread in values is especially pronounced for the power factor. Table 1.7 3. cosφ.640 38. Manufacturers’ data sheets often do not give these parameters.640 38.0 60 8.7 53.0 60 8. Watts *Insulation Data Courtesy of the Okonite Company @ 50° C High-Loss EPR 7.19. This example contains typical data.394 Low-Loss EPR 7.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1.20 0.30 4.093 High-Loss EPR 7. Watts Dielectric Loss. Watts Concentric Neutral Loss. consult the cable manufacturer to get accurate data on the cable being used.640 38.20 0.0 4.180 0. don’t use the sample data in actual-case calculations.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1. the information may be obtained from standard references.60 3.180 0.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1.9 0.2 1/0 A1 373 220 430 1. the cable power factor often varies substantially with cable temperature.60 2.0 60 8.184 0. most modern insulation types contain additives that affect dielectric constant and power factor.0 60 8. Watts TOTAL LOSS.4 12. It is recommended that.863 TR-XLPE 7.06 4.603 TR-XLPE 7.4 13. and power factor.60 3.640 38.5 41.27 3.1: Cable Loss Calculations.924 0.3 9.414 0. it is usually necessary to contact engineering specialists on the staff of the manufacturer of each specific cable type.19 shows data and loss calculation results for a typical three-phase cable run.27 2. The insulation dielectric constant.640 38.20 0.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 5 1 easily be found from catalog sheets or standard references. For actual situations. To be sure that the correct values are known.7 4.20 0. Sample Cable Loss Analysis.0 60 8.180 0.0 60 8.20 0. εt.5 62. Three insulation types are represented at two different temperatures.20 0. There are often large differences in values for dielectric constant and power factor among various cable types.60 2.35 0.25 4.180 0. In addition.06 4.180 0. For pure materials such as TR-XLPE. @ 25° C Insulation Type Sample Data (E) Line-to-Ground Operating Voltage in kV Conductor Size (D) Diameter in mils (T) Thickness in mils (rM) Mean Radius in mils (S) Center-to-Center Spacing in mils (R) Resistance in Ω/kft (RS) Sheath Resistance in Ω/kft (εt) Dielectric Constant of the Insulation (cosφ pu) Insulation Power Factor per Unit (L) Circuit Length in kft (I) Load Current in Amperes Conductor Loss.180 0.394 Low-Loss EPR 7. TABLE 1. However. if comparisons are being EXAMPLE 1. are sometimes difficult to determine.7 715 0.25 4. however.679 0. Watts Charging Loss.3 9.35 0.60 2.9 0.640 38.358 .7 33.

Appendix B to that manual gives annual kilowatt-hour losses for a selection of conductor sizes and loading levels.400 per year.22 kW/mile × $383/kW). the annual loss expense per mile as calculated above is typically $84 per mile (0. An excellent source of this data is the cable manufacturer’s Insulated Cable Engineers Association (ICEA) Qualification Report for the particular cable construction.19 show that sheath. However. Another important consideration is that small loss differences among alternative cable types can accumulate to a significant expense if an extremely large amount of cable is placed in ser- vice. the conductor distance is 300 feet. TABLE 1. the relative values of the three types of losses may become more significant. Charging-current losses.05 = 361 watts Annual energy losses are determined by using the loss factor: Energy Losses = 0. Load on the neutral is assumed to be negligible.22 kW per circuit mile from the results shown on the table.167 ohms per kft is given by reference tables. dielectric. for example. Losses at peak load are calculated as follows: WR = I2 R = 852 × 0.472 watt-hours = 632 kWh The conductor resistance is obtained from standard references. In this case. Therefore. and charging-current losses are negligible compared with conductor load-current losses. this expense comes to $8. aluminum 85 amperes 20% loaded.05 ohms. The loss figures in Table 1. Ask the manufacturer for the data from ICEA qualification tests. which no longer seems insignificant. a resistance of 0. For 100 circuit miles of installed cable. Loss control methods for application to secondary designs are the same as described in the NRECA Distribution System Loss Management Manual for either overhead or underground situations.2: Calculating Losses on Secondary Cables. single-phase 150 feet No. Once the figures are obtained. Secondary Cable Losses For secondary UD cables. such as 40°C. This example illustrates how the losses on secondary cables are calculated. losses other than load-current-related conductor I2R losses are truly insignificant. A conductor temperature of 25°C is assumed for underground secondary cables that are not heavily made among cable types. except in the case of high-loss EPR. Voltage of Circuit Circuit Length Conductor Peak Load Loss Factor 120/240-V. However. . compare the data from different sources to confirm the reasonableness of the information for a particular cable type.760 hours × 361 watts = 632. 1/0 AWG.2 × 8. and the total resistance is 0. Because this loss is nonload-dependent.3 6 – Se c t i on 1 1 EXAMPLE 1. under light-load or other unusual conditions. Appendix D of NRECA CRN Project 90-8 provides a method for evaluating cable losses and life expectancy in the purchasing process. the cost of additional dielectric losses ($84 per mile) must be compared with any additional life expectancy that might be available from the higher loss insulation system. may become significant for extremely long cable runs because these losses increase with the cube of the circuit length. the engineer should use only written data obtained from the manufacturer of that cable type. be as specific as possible about the data being requested. Sample data are shown in Table 1.20: Sample Secondary Cable Data. The dielectric loss differential between normal EPR cable and TR-XLPE cable is approximately 0.20. When requesting data from cable manufacturers. Losses should be quoted for a specific temperature. in a total economic evaluation.

is not better economic choice in the long run.00 34.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 7 1 approximately 20 percent less than this example PAD-MOUNTED TRANSFORMER LOSSES are available from manufacturers. Use of the The losses on pad-mounted transformers used higher efficiency transformer will save about $40 on UD systems are a significant expense. Annual Loss Feed-Through Annual If hundreds of units are involved. the non-load490 watts of winding losses at nameplate load. The first ple transformer. load dependent and represents a continuous exThe Distribution System Loss Management pense whenever the transformer is energized. if the higher As with all types of transefficiency transformer can be formers. larger savings can be achieved by deferring the installation 50 140 54. the avoidance of TABLE 1.00 service by placing a pedestal containing a feed- . Core Loss Cost = $383/kW × 0. fore most living units are built and occupied.21. winding losses.00 For 50. the trated in a small number of transformers to allow annual costs associated with each type of loss can be calculated as follows: the de-energization of most of the units in areas not yet occupied. 25 82 $ 31. When energized transformers are installed beConsider a 50-kVA pad-mounted transformer having 140 watts of core losses and fore there are consumers to serve. transformer losses are year period. losses on pada significant expense.00 of each transformer not needed for immediate 100 260 100.00 $ 20. Because The total annual cost of the losses associated with operating this transformer this bushing can be reused elsewhere after the is $194.00 20. as shown by Table 1. transformer is placed in service.and 100-kVA installations. the savings Size Core Losses Cost at Device Net associated with deferred energization could ex(kVA) (watts) $383/kW Annual Cost Savings ceed $8. Higher efficiency transformers with losses DEFERMENT OF TRANSFORMER ENERGIZATION New housing developments often require the construction of the electric UD system well beEXAMPLE 1. then it is a category. expensive during peak loads. costs about $150. Close annually.00 20.706 kW = $140 the use of a feed-through stand-off bushing which.00 $ 11.140 kW = $54 Installing a de-energized transformer requires Winding Loss Cost = $199/kW × 0. Service to street lights can be concenWith the annual cost figures given for losses at the beginning of this subsection. which is enough to attention to the management amortize about $300 in initial of losses on any type of transinvestment cost at a 12 percent former is essential to a loss Pad-mounted carrying charge rate over a 20control program. Despite this expense. comprises of transformer losses and the means to control load-dependent losses that become especially the associated expenses to the extent feasible.000 annually. in most cases. If this unit is loaded to 60 kVA at peak dependent or no-load losses on the transformers load. the special bushing cost is equivalent to $20 annually at a 12 percent carrying charge rate over a 20-year period. Thus.21: Savings from Deferred Transformer Energization. the winding losses will be as follows: represent an expense that is uncompensated by revenue. core losses. This expense can be avoided by keepWinding Losses = (60 ÷ 50)2 × 490 watts = 706 watts ing the transformers de-energized until they are needed. purchased for less than a $300 mounted transformers are of price premium over the samtwo distinct types. Manual provides thorough coverage of the issue The second category.3: Typical Costs Associated with Transformer Losses.00 80. core losses represents a net savings.

21) Total Deferred Cost Temporary Equipment Annual Cost Net Annual Savings $ 750.00 120. the engineer must get certain information from the consumer or developer. A nonrecoverable labor cost of about $160 is incurred for installing the temporary feed-through pedestal and removing it later. If hundreds of units are involved.00 1.00 54. including the following: • Site plan with defined lots and utility easements. • Reliability needs. GET THE REQUIRED INFORMATION Before any design work can be started. and • Final grading plans. STEP 4: Select the primary cable route. The techniques given here and in the NRECA Distribution System Loss Management Manual provide the necessary calculation methods.00 through device at the future transformer location. If the average deferment time is two years. STEP 7: Obtain all easements. the savings may exceed $25.00 50 kVA $ 1. which represents a $40 annual cost at a 12 percent carrying charge rate (0.750. On the plus side. Therefore.00 31.00 54. Steps for Layout of a UD System To help the engineer with layout of a UD system. When the time comes for a transformer to be installed. STEP 5: Locate sectionalizing equipment. These results show that deferred installation of transformers is not significantly beneficial for 25-kVA units.12 × 330 = $40). the net savings can be substantial in the case of larger units. • Project schedules.12) Deferred Annual Core Loss Cost (from Table 1. However. CONCLUSION Electrical losses on UD systems represent an expense that should be managed to reduce costs. layout. STEP 2: Arrange the service and transformer STEP 1.00 310. 25 kVA Transformer Price Deferred Transformer Carrying Charges at 12% (Transformer Price x 0. • Location of other underground utilities.3 8 – Se c t i on 1 1 TABLE 1. special care must be used to avoid excessive cable bending with this type of installation. this cost is $80 annually.000. However. Simply routing the cable aboveground at future transformer locations and looping it back into the trench without cutting it can achieve still larger savings. The overall results are summarized in Table 1.00 $ 120. An enclosure is then installed to protect the above-ground loop. When alternative UD system designs are considered. the cable is de-energized and cut to prepare for the installation of the elbows and transformer.00 100 kVA $ 1.00 $ 90.00 120. .00 121. STEP 8: Prepare staking sheets.00 120.00 174. this subsection describes eight design steps: STEP 1: Get the required information. • Load and voltage requirements. it is necessary to estimate the amount of these losses and their costs. the cost for exercising this deferment option is $120 annually ($40 + $80). STEP 3: Calculate the consumer load and select proper equipment ratings.00 $ 210.000 annually.22: Savings From Deferred Transformer Installation. STEP 6: Visit the project site.00 100. The cost of the pedestal and device is about $330.22 for three common transformer sizes. the annual carrying charges on a transformer are avoided along with the cost of core losses.00 190. and the extra switching that may be required during the final transformer installation does represent an additional expense.

It is the engineer’s duty to means longer service conductor lengths and persevere until all required data are collected in more consumers per transformer. Rather. This map get a copy of the dential load does not require shows the lot arrangements the transformer to be next to and is necessary for designing site plan and the house. or use materials inefficiently. important to get a copy of the For subdivisions. the project may encounter unnecesper transformer. Deinformation. this decreases service reliability. this information. the typical resisubdivision plat. the developer. contractors. fail to meet conspace in the secondary compartment of the sumer expectations. and other number of transformers. Rather. Each of these consumers fluid in the transformer. use of “less flammable” road as the transformer.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 3 9 1 barrier wall or an oil absorption For subdivisions. is placed near the building. utility representatives. transformer. a transAND TRANSFORMER LAYOUT former may serve some lots loCommercial and industrial cated across the street. If the utility or the building dig-ins. pedestal is supplied by a sinthe transformer should be near gle secondary cable from the those consumers’ delivery transformer (see Figure 1. a final design should not be released pending on lot size. voltage flicker. vehicle traffic. ing the distance will include building use. owner concludes that additional protection is Secondary pedestals are not the ideal method warranted. the cost to the cooperative transformers have space for connecting a maxiand its consumers will be greater than for a mum of eight secondary/service conductors. The engineer can begin to arrange this service This information is rarely gathered in one and transformer layout after receiving the subdibrief conversation. Often the transformer Unfortunately. This design. it is very bed around the transformer. Although the engineer can plan many voltage flicker at the consumer’s delivery point aspects of the project on the basis of preliminary often limits the service conductor length. Another limiting factor is the sary construction difficulties. and other public safety cutting and provide additional protection against considerations. fire It is also advisable to have cable in conduit for rating of the exposed wall. Most single-phase pad-mounted In any of these cases. or installation of a . To limit crossing is from a secondary the voltage drop and flicker limited by pedestal. STEP 2. This includes secondary conductors used to feed street and area lights. tor length may reduce the number of consumers Otherwise. the time required to replace the failed the transformer and the building. ing the minimum allowable distance between However.24). the transthe layout of underground farecorded plat. limiting the service conducuntil all information is collected and verified. Appendix D contains a cation and provide service to form to use when collecting several consumers. presence of wall any roadway crossing to eliminate future street openings. final form. The engineer should A cable fault on the one secondary cable interuse good judgment and experience in determinrupts power to all the attached consumers. Several studies have shown that the through several conversations and meetings with most economical arrangement uses the least consumers. well-designed system. it is usually compiled vision plat. However. The secondary associated with these loads. A consumers usually have heavy Service conductor convenient way to serve sevloads that can include largelength is often eral lots with only one road horsepower motors. Factors affectcable will be shorter if the cable is in a conduit. ARRANGE THE SERVICE In some layouts. in turn. former can be in a central locilities. In contrast. points. such enhancements might be achieved for serving consumers on the same side of the by increased separation.

therefore. Legend Single-Phase. The interior lots share back property lines. CHARINGTON CT. AY MW GEHA BRID OL DC AS AY KW BRID NE W R YA MO AY HW UT NEW DOVER ROAD GEHA AY MW ELM E ST C AD T. Table 1. Note: The three shaded lots indicate the worst locations for voltage drop and flicker. it is more economical to serve these lots from transformers located along the rear property lines.2 lists these other criteria and compares the advantages and disadvantages of front versus rear line placement. should have a separate service cable from the transformer. This combination of front and rear property line placement is often the most economical layout. ROW OW) 35 (1 00' R ROW . This improves reliability.25 shows a service and transformer layout for a 75-lot subdivision.24: Road Crossing to Feed Secondary Pedestal. is often more economical than installing a secondary pedestal (see Economic Comparison of System Configurations earlier in this section) and also eliminates maintenance of the secondary pedestal. Figure 1. Pad-Mounted Transformer Secondary-Voltage Cable Streetlight ROW ROW SR 14 FIGURE 1. FIGURE 1. Transformers located along the front property lines serve the perimeter lots.25: Service and Transformer Layout for 75-Lot Subdivision.4 0 – Se c t i on 1 1 Secondary Pedestal 4/0 Transformer EL A TE MS DC T. Because of criteria other than economics. the cooperative may allow transformer placement along the front property line only or the rear property line only. This layout features 13 transformers that serve an average of six consumers each.

the engineer must check for voltage drop and voltage flicker at the consumer’s delivery point. Although the primary cable length is increased. For voltage flicker. the engineer will select the following: • A secondary cable with adequate capacity. However.2. If the calculated voltage drop exceeds the limits in Table B. the magnitude and frequency of the voltage flicker must be within the permissible levels shown in Figure B. it is not necessary to calculate these values for each consumer. For voltage drop at the consumer’s delivery point. Appendix B contains equations for calculating voltage drop and flicker. • Increasing the cable size. However. A low-impedance transformer typically costs more than a standard unit and requires the utility to stock standard and nonstandard transformers. it may be more economical to increase the cable size rather than shorten the cable length. the engineer should determine a few worst cases and perform the calculations for these only. If it is not practical to place the transformer closer. For voltage drop. Instead. larger motors. In reviewing the total primary current for the load to be served. or • Paralleling cables. the engineer can increase the secondary/service cable size or can parallel two smaller cables. the engineer must select primary cables with the proper ampacity ratings. The larger secondary/service cables can cost more than primary cable. the engineer must find ways to reduce the circuit impedance. . care must be taken to also maintain load balance among phases on the feeders serving these loads.1. As load current is usually a fixed value. a transformer in a subdivision will serve multiple deliveries. • A transformer with sufficient kVA for the diversified consumer load. The engineer can reduce the transformer impedance by selecting the following: • A unit with a lower impedance. the worst cases are a combination of longer secondary/ service lengths. the engineer can shorten the secondary/service cable length. Equipment Loading. these methods are usually not cost-effective. For residential services. After making these selections. CALCULATE THE CONSUMER LOAD AND SELECT PROPER EQUIPMENT RATINGS From the information collected in Step 1 and the service and transformer layout of Step 2. when decisions are made concerning these total primary load currents. therefore. The voltage drop must not exceed the maximum values in Table B. Voltage drop is a product of load current and circuit impedance.1. and smaller transformer sizes. But instead of serving a single delivery. the engineer can calculate the expected consumer loads. Likewise. this approach is often economical for single deliveries. The cost of installing and operating these additional transformers may be greater than the cost of increasing the secondary/service cable size. Reducing the load current or the circuit impedance reduces the voltage drop. particularly those with large secondary/service cables. On the basis of the calculated load.25 highlights the worst cases for voltage drop and voltage flicker. or • A unit with a greater kVA rating. Figure 1. A transformer with a greater kVA rating costs more and also has higher core (no-load) losses.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 4 1 1 STEP 3. By placing the transformer closer to the consumer’s delivery point. shortening the secondary/service cable lengths in a subdivision requires installing additional transformers. Therefore. and • A primary cable with ampacity based on the expected operating conditions. Information for making these selections is contained in Section 4. the engineer must modify the design. In subdivisions. it is more practical to lower the secondary/service cable impedance rather than the transformer impedance by doing the following: • Shortening the cable length. the circuit impedance consists of the transformer and the secondary/ service cable impedance. the worst cases are the longer secondary/service cables served from transformers having a greater number of connected consumers. For a subdivision layout.

Property owners tors. Pad-Mounted Transformer ROW ROW DC AS AY KW ELM EA ST DC T. One this is to establish a utility corridor. this method ers. The ridor requires a wider easement than the usual harmonics result from chopping the voltage sine 10-foot easement for electric facilities only.4 2 – Se c t i on 1 1 cable route should be the Reducing the cable impedmost efficient way to serve ance also reduces the voltage Offset the primary all the transformers.2. the locate its facilities within the street right-of-way. Utiliwave to reduce the voltage at the terminals of ties may find this concept works well in subdivithe motor. route should be offset at least shown in Figure B. Single-Phase. A utility corproduces harmonics on the electric system. engineer must select a primary cable route. tors and the proposed starting methods to see if The route should also minimize conflict with the arrangements will cause problems on the other buried utilities. . UD Cable FIGURE 1. The BRID NE OL W RM YA OU Y WA TH GEHA AY MW CHARINGTON CT. The engineer needs to review large moerty line. For situaone to two feet from any tions involving polyphase moproperty line. each utility occupies its allocated electronic “soft” starter. The primary cable flicker to the permissible levels property line. a consumer may use a often place fences along their property lines and starting method that reduces the motor inrush could damage buried cable placed on the propcurrent. which allows each utility to know the apmethods. sions where the developer has defined a wide utility easement on the subdivision plat. One way to accomplish electric system or for other consumers. STEP 4. For proflicker during motor starting. NEW DOVER ROAD ROW OW) SR 14 35 (1 00' R ROW . SELECT THE PRIMARY CABLE ROUTE Some developers may ask the cooperative to After locating the transformers and services. cable route at least jects with multiple transformFor large motors. Legend Single-Phase. Within the method of particular concern is the use of an corridor. an open-loop feeder is may not limit the voltage 1 to 2 feet from any preferred. this type of reduced voltage starting proximate location of other utilities. Unlike conventional space.26: Primary Cable Layout for 75-Lot Subdivision. Primary Voltage.

requires working space on both sides of the equipment. If the equipment SECTIONALIZING EQUIPMENT The minimum working cannot be relocated. equipment door.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 4 3 1 Although this is convenient for the developer.27: Minimum Required Working Space. county. risk area is a crop field. This method is acceptable for use with directburied. equipment doors or obstruct fuse cabinets. These governments have rules about utilities located within the road right-of-way. Equipment Pad Clear Working Space FIGURE 1. to bury cables at a specified depth. However. LOCATE parking lots. Undersnow removal equipment. Another concern is damage from vehicles. Tall crops can obscure Utility personnel have to operate and mainthe equipment. Figure 1. this equipment. These private roads are often released to the local city or state road system.27. This particular cable route has two road crossings. A faulted cable section under a road is difficult to repair or replace unless the cable is in a conduit. the engineer can space extends out some type of barricade around locate the sectionalizing 10 feet from the the equipment. Another highdesirable locations for sectionalizing devices. Finally. the coopAfter selecting the primary erative may have to install cable route. the required working space. and switchgear. junction cabinets. therefore. or state right-of-way. describes the equipment is covered by snow. The cooperative can avoid these conflicts by locating its facilities on a private right-of-way off the edge of the city. sticks. making it invisible to someone tain these devices. It should be noted that placing the cable in the conduit will reduce the cable ampacity. it usually creates future problems for the cooperative. which includes barricade must not block the riser poles. the equipment operating farm equipment. of the equipment and 10 feet out from the equipment door as shown in Figure 1. the cooperative may have to relocate its facilities at its expense. A conduit with cable or a spare conduit placed beneath the road allows the cooperative to replace the cable without disturbing the road surface. Most require the utility to file a right-of-way encroachment. therefore. These high-risk areas needs to be in accessible locations. These devices are used to proEquipment located along vide sectionalizing at desired streets and at intersections can be damaged by points within the UD system. particularly if the ground System Sectionalizing. and to meet very high compaction levels during trench backfill. jacketed primary cable.26 shows a primary cable route for the 75-lot subdivision. Cars are likely to bump and damage equipment located in STEP 5. Padmounted switchgear often has two sets of doors and. the selected cable route should minimize the number of road crossings. When the governing body decides to widen the road. The minimum working space is the width 10' 0" . Operating must be avoided or adequate protective methods pad-mounted equipment requires enough workmust be used to minimize the chance for equiping space to move elbow terminators with hot ment damage. Section 3.

vices. different trenching equipment and techniques will need to be used. Trenching across sloped terrain is difficult neutrals and ground conductors. Certain types of terrain can make cable installation and equipment placement difficult or impractical. Also provide for adequate level opproblem terrain. One way to because of problems controlling the mechanized protect neutral conductors is to prevent them trenching equipment safely while achieving a from contacting the soil by using jacketed cable. • Streams. For more severe • Sandy soils. terrain presents a number of problems whose severity usually increases with the degree of These soils can corrode unprotected. That secand tunneling erosion around the cable or contion explains how to determine if soils are corduit. • Swamps. Unfortunately. be needed along with molded or pre-cast ground sleeves of During the site visit. or at least use the more moderate slopes This step is very important because it identiwhenever practical. cover. refer to Section 7. the engineer should look sufficient height to span the difference in elevafor these and other adverse terrain types along tion from the high side to the low side. therefore. Visit the project or the use of a compartmental • Corrosive soils.4 4 – Se c t i on 1 1 problems on moderate slopes. or walls of stone or timber will • Flood plains. Changing the location of equipment and corrosive soils are the following: cable during construction is very time-consuming and. always practical. Installing pad-mounted equipment on sloped terrain requires careful excavation to provide a level terraced surface for a monolithic pad • Sloped terrain. the engineer will erosion of the soil down to the transformer is relocate the cable or equipment to avoid the minimized. slopes. and the engineer must adapt Although it is not always possible. even if the slope is site to identify • Rocky soils. However. buried slope. will generally address these STEP 6. For information equipment and. On more severe slopes. moderate. Sloped Terrain • Poorly drained areas. Examples of problems with terrain are the following: . lems with both surface erosion of the backfill Cathodic Protection Requirements. such as sod. If these problems require relocating cable or equipment. Ideally. the engineer must visit the project site to view the terrain. Rememthe proposed cable route and at proposed ber to establish grades in such a manner that equipment locations. the use of retaining • Unstable soils. Careful attention to tamping and comrosive and what types of cathodic protection paction. style pad. Methods for adapting a design areas for the installation of conductors and deare described under the subheadings below. the counterpoise and/or ground elecTrenching up or down sloped terrain also has trodes must remain in contact with the soil and control and safety issues with the trenching be protected by another means. stable excavation whose sides are vertical. fies problems before construction. problem terrain. along with an anchored or encased conduit and more aggressive erosion control techniques. VISIT THE PROJECT SITE After completing the preliminary layout. additionally. relocation is not erating area in front of the equipment. the Corrosive Soils engineer can easily modify the preliminary layTerrain features that indicate potentially severely out. more expensive. the underthe design to reduce installation and mainteground designer should try to avoid sloped nance problems. introduces probon corrosion protection. or Installation of cable and equipment on sloped • Visible alkali (mineral salts). along with installing a stable ground are needed.

In these areas. and Steep grades. or conduit encased in concrete. These soils shift easily and are also prone to washing. The supplemental protection must meet the requirements of the 2007 NESC. Either of these can be installed by trenching. the wind can blow sand and cover pad-mounted equipment. therefore. especially in coastal environments. Placing transformers on poles provides extra distance from the ground and may eliminate the problems caused by blowing sand. Increased burial depths (an additional six to 12 inches) should be considered because covering can be blown away. it may be hard to maintain the required burial depth. Grading by the developer can also show signs of underlying rock. making it difficult to keep paint on padmounted equipment. Trench erosion can reduce the soil cover and possibly expose a buried cable. but maintenance will be much more practical and economical. Washing can erode trenches and undermine the support of pad-mounted equipment. Alternatively. particularly the cable jacket. the . Rock along the cable route slows installation and increases project cost. plowing. rigid steel conduit. One way to protect the cable is to use conduit or a cable-in-conduit assembly. the cooperative must provide supplemental protection such as cable placement in Schedule 40 PVC conduit. Cables may also be exposed where soil has washed away from an equipment pad. Visible rock usually indicates underlying rock. or tunneling. making it difficult to access and operate. Unstable Soils Some examples of unstable soils are the following: • • • • River banks. and • Sandblasting of painted metal surfaces. They also help prevent exposure of cables that enter the equipment. This adds substantially to initial cost.b. the cooperative will have to use special equipment that can penetrate rock. When trenchers are used in these conditions. the exposed metal quickly corrodes.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 4 5 1 Rocky Soils Rocky soils are often characterized by protruding boulders or rocks lying on the surface. Sandy soils shift easily from the wind and can undermine the support of pad-mounted equipment. Because the rock is difficult to penetrate. pads with ground sleeves or basements provide better support and more security than a flat pad does. After the wind-blown sand removes the paint. Unsecured embankments. • Wind erosion of sand from under equipment. Windy conditions in a sandy environment provide nature’s own sandblasting machine. the cooperative should reroute to avoid rocky areas. One solution to this damage is to use stainless steel (or other noncorrosive) equipment cabinets. However. A final consideration in rocky soils is damage to the underground cable. As a result. Sandy Soils Sandy soils can cause problems in at least three different ways: • Difficulty opening a trench. Another option for protection in a trench is to use a select backfill for a cable bed and covering. This condition is improved by using silt fencing or shrubbery as a wind block. trenches fill with water and are difficult to excavate. Another acceptable installation method is to use a cable plow. If cable cannot be placed at the minimum depth. these soils are often in areas with a high water table. Another option is to use overhead primary with underground services as the only underground facilities. they are often equipped with a cable chute. the cooperative can make test borings with an anchor auger. In addition. If rerouting is not practical. If the washing is severe. Section 352 D. Natural springs. To confirm the presence of underlying rock. Sandy soils have little cohesion and usually will not hold a trench open for cable placement.2. installing a wind block does increase the initial project cost and future maintenance expenses. Rocks directly contacting the cable can damage the jacket.

the enmerged in water and. the tion equipment. For engineer should consider placing the cable in underground facilities. To reduce misunderstandings between the cooperative Flood Plains Get an easement and its property owner memThe best way to evaluate for bers. if the cable section is part of a radial Such corrosion can lead to premature equipsystem. all affected property owners before installing • Replanting of the slope.4 6 – Se c t i on 1 1 building codes forbid the placement of strucequipment could shift enough to damage transtures in flood plains. possibly causing a system back into the open trench. The easement must define the cooperative will need to construct a water and width and boundaries of this right-of-way strip. or any underground facilities. maintain proper depth for cable burial. As a minimum. Though most . must not be gineer should avoid routing cable or placing used in areas subject to flooding. flood plains. construction personnel installation difficult. Otherwise. making it difficult to outage or exposing the interior compartments. these areas can usually be former bushings or cable terminations. This easement gives the utility the legal right to enter the If the potential for trench erosion is severe. ing. the device Wet soils also tend to collapse may be displaced. traversed with cable. If this is not practical. this right-of-way must conduit or installing a cable-in-conduit assembly be a minimum of 10 feet wide—five feet on and possibly encasing the conduit with concrete. If to operate a trencher or other piece of installaequipment must be placed in these areas. OBTAIN ALL EASEMENTS • Proper compaction and crowning of the The cooperative must get an easement from trench. Dead-front. the property and access a right-of-way strip. Air-insulated switching cabinets will fail if subTo eliminate these types of problems. it can deposit large if the cable fails while the cable route is flooded. amounts of soil around a piece of equipment. doing the following minimizes erosion: STEP 7. float. Inburied cable and should present problems only stead of undermining pads. wet. the engineer should consider providing ment failure and possible access to the interior an alternative feed. making it difficult to mainment in areas subject to floodtain the equipment. the flooded section can be isolated. each side of the centerline of the electrical faciliThe engineer should also avoid placing ties. However. ever. soil block to prevent soil accumulation around These rights-of-way should also be shown and the equipment. erative’s rights. these devices must be supwill have problems maneuverported by pads that will not ing a trencher or a cable plow. The 10-foot width provides enough space equipment at the bottom of steep slopes. therefore. compartments. By definition. If the cable section is part of an open-loop sysProlonged contact with soil deposits causes the tem. recorded on the plat. the easement must be possible flooding is to check before installing any specific in defining the cooptopographical maps that locate underground facilities. pad-mounted Unstable soils can also transformers and dead-front. Howmetal housing of the equipment to corrode. Flooding has little effect on Washing can also have the opposite effect. The soil deposits can also block The cooperative may have to place equipthe equipment doors. limited use of another’s real property. If Unstable soils oil-insulated switching cabigrades or embankments are can make nets can operate during occatoo steep or if soils are too sional immersion. an • Use of equipment pads with ground sleeves easement is a right afforded a person to make or basements. make installation difficult. equipment on steep slopes.

bounded by lands of: _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________________________ and over and across said premises within a right-of-way strip having a width of _____ feet on each side of a centerline determined by the centerline of the electrical facilities as installed. privilege. and to make alterations and additions thereto. the Grantor has hereunto set his hand and seal. and easement to go in and upon that certain land of Grantor (hereinafter “premises”) situated in said County and State. to perform necessary maintenance and repairs. ________________________ Drawn by ___________________________ FIGURE 1. Witness________________________________________________________________________(SEAL) ________________________________________(SEAL) ________________________________________(SEAL) ________________________________________(SEAL) ______________________________________________ (Corporate Name) ATTEST:____________________________________ By_________________________________________ _________ Secretary _________ (President) Project No. that __________________________________________________. receipt of a copy of which is acknowledged by Grantor. or. maintain. hereinafter called “Grantee. or other obstructions. either above ground or below ground. and to clear that land outside the right-ofway strip and to keep the area within 10 feet of said door clear of trees. to include transformers and service connections. . __________________________________. and assigns. This right-of-way is given to permit the construction of electrical facilities presently proposed.28: Sample Easement. if corporate. to construct. The foregoing notwithstanding. its successors. structures. widening. in consideration of the sum of One Dollar ($1. IN WITNESS WHEREOF.Design of an Underground Distribution Sy s t e m – 4 7 1 Sample Easement STATE OF ______________________________ COUNTY OF ____________________________ KNOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS. _________________________________________________________________________________________ hereinafter called “Grantor” (whether one or more). does hereby grant unto__________________________________. or other obstructions.00) and other good and valuable considerations. or improvement. for the purpose of transporting electricity and for the communications purposes of Grantee and its licensees. this _______ day of __________________. Facilities at other locations and future extensions of presently constructed facilities are not permitted by this agreement. and operate underground lines and conduits with other necessary apparatus and appliances.” the right. 20___. and to clear the land within the right-of-way strip and to keep it clear of trees. The following rights are also granted to Grantee: to enter said premises to inspect said lines. All underground facilities are to be installed in accordance with the provisions of Grantee’s Underground Distribution Installment Plan. Grantee may relocate its electrical facilities and right-of-way strip over the premises to conform to any future highway or street relocation. has caused this instrument to be signed in its corporate name by its fully authorized officers and its seal to be hereunto affixed by authority of its Board of Directors. structures.

the engineer will have to attach a separate construction drawing. Another area of conflict is clear space in front of the doors of transformers and sectionalizing cabinets. These departments must be able to easily interpret the staking sheet. STEP 8. The easement must be notarized and filed with the appropriate municipal. and replace the electrical facilities located within the right-of-way strip. If the construction crews modify the layout. After personnel have staked the project. The cooperative will also benefit if the following occur: • The right-of-way strip is shown and recorded on the plat. These activities require the right-of-way to be clear of trees. if owned by a corporation. The staking sheet is used to generate a materials list. or county authority in which the property lies. Scheduling personnel will use the staking sheet to estimate the manpower and equipment needed to construct the project. maintenance of these devices requires a clear working space 10 feet out from the door (see Figure 1. Accurate staking sheets produce accurate system operating maps and accurate permanent plant and accounting records.4 8 – Se c t i on 1 1 the cooperative must have the right to install. For larger projects. For smaller projects. The staking sheet must agree with the as-built project because these sheets are the basis for the cooperative’s mapping system. To avoid this problem in a subdivision. As a result. While in the field. maintain. the cooperative cannot maintain the device. structures. For subdivision installations. and landscaping. construction crews will use the staking sheets for information on installing the underground facilities. Underground staking sheets provide important project information to several departments within the cooperative. Figure 1. The consumer may consider these devices unattractive and try to hide them with landscaping or a surrounding structure.28 shows a sample easement. Staking personnel use the sheets to physically mark the field locations of equipment and trenches. thus requiring multiple easements. and street lighting locations and note any conduit or temporary pedestal installations. Prepare Staking Sheets The final step is preparing a staking sheet. Any changes made in the field must be shown on the staking sheet. including getting the signatures of all property owner members of a particular tract or the signatures of appropriate corporate officers. parish. the staking sheet provides enough space for a sketch of the required work. Obtaining and recording an easement can be time-consuming. operate. Because the easement is a legal document. Purchasing and materials personnel use this list to order and stock the necessary materials. it must be filled out completely and correctly. the cooperative needs only one easement for all the planned underground facilities in the subdivision. the easement must specifically define the cooperative’s right to clear the right-of-way. the cooperative is wise to get one easement from the developer before any lots are sold. Rights-of-way that were clear during the installation of underground facilities will likely become obstructed as property owners erect fences. This way. and other obstructions.27). the engineer can show the required work on a subdivision plat. • The subdivision restrictions define the cooperative easement as transferable to new owners. This construction drawing should show the trench. equipment. storage buildings. particularly if one underground project involves multiple property owners. Because these obstructions must be cleared to repair or replace the underground facilities.29 shows a staking sheet for underground service to a commercial consumer. . The construction drawing could also have details showing how far to offset equipment from the property line and the location of other underground utilities. staking personnel may have to adjust the layout for conflicts with other utilities or for terrain problems. Figure 1. they must also modify the staking sheet. As noted. These conflicts are more easily resolved if the easement states that the area within 10 feet of the door of any transformer or cabinet will be kept clear of any obstructions.

N. Hillsborough.C. Source: Piedmont Electric Membership Corporation. H WY 86 SO UT H .Desi g n o f a n Un d e rg ro u n d Di s t r i b u t i o n Sy s t e m – 4 9 1 FIGURE 1.29: Staking Sheet for Service to a Commercial Consumer.

7. main feeders. safety. Visit the project site. Obtain all easements. Cable wells used with a flat pad provide more space for cable training and are suitable for three-phase pad-mounted transformers and junction cabinets.5 0 – Se c t i on 1 1 Summary and Recommendations 1. the former layout. and voltage flicker must be considered. System upgrades should be planned by considering future voltage conversions. 12. 9. 3. To minimize these problems. 6. equipment ratings. three-phase cable installation. Flat pads are sometimes suitable for single-phase padmounted transformers and small singlephase fuse cabinets. 2. and conduit installations. sub feeders. . A joint-use trench often creates operating problems. The steps for layout of a UD system are as follows: STEP 1: Get the required information. voltage drop. Select the primary cable route. The UD system should be designed to minimize cable and pad-mounted transformer losses. Prepare staking sheets. Placing facilities along the front property line makes them more accessible for operation and maintenance. 4. location of a joint-use trench must be shown on all operating maps. 10. Locate sectionalizing equipment. STEP 2: Arrange the service and trans- 11. Joint-use trench with other utilities requires a contractual arrangement among involved parties. transformer and secondary systems. The UD design can be improved by comparing the economics of different system configurations. In designing a UD system. 8. cable ampacity. reliability. STEP 3: Calculate the consumer load and STEP 4: STEP 5: STEP 6: STEP 7: STEP 8: select proper equipment ratings. 5. A box pad is useful to support pad-mounted switchgear and for installations on slopes or hillsides. and street and area lighting. Equipment mountings provide support for pad-mounted equipment. The main types of underground systems are the following: • • • • • circuit exits.

It is necessary to pay close attention to the design and manufacture of all cables. The concentric neutral and jacket options for primary voltage cables are also 35-kV class) shielded cables and secondary voltage (600-volt class) unshielded cables. Typical system voltages are 7.5 kV.4/ 24. Generally.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 5 1 2 In This Section: Typical Cable Configuration Cable Selection Typical Cable Configuration Conductor Size Designations Conductor Materials and Configuration Cable Insulation Materials Insulation Fabrication Conductor Shields and Insulation Shields Cable Specification and Purchasing Cable Acceptance Summary and Recommendations The heart of any underground system is the cable that carries power from the source to the load. the major cable components are the following: .9/34. cable designed for application on a 7. regardless of whether it is in a single-phase or a three-phase circuit. The focus should be on single-conductor cable because it is the predominant type of cable used in rural and suburban distribution systems in North America. It addresses the designs and materials most effective in delivering reliable and economical service. For instance. 14. the engineer should consider the components of the system. To gain an overview of cable design.5-kV system will be rated 15 kV.5-kV.9 kV. The higher voltage cables are used on systems rated 7. This section provides an introduction to the technical aspects of electric distribution cables. The cable must incorporate the most important characteristics of the ideal utility system: low initial cost and high reliability. Recommendations are included for conditions generally encountered on rural electric systems.2/12. Such cables are classed by the phase-to-phase voltage of the system on which they are intended to operate.9/34. The main types of cables used on rural electric systems are primary voltage (15. The main components of cables reviewed include the conductor and the insulation system (including shielding). and 19.2/12. The variety of cable features available for the various applications is also addressed. 14.5-kV grounded wye. Experience with early UD cables has forcefully shown that the lowest-cost cable that can be successfully placed into operation is not necessarily the best choice.4/24. and 19.2/12. Most of the cables on these systems are of concentric neutral design.5 kV.9-kV.

2: Bare Concentric Neutral Cable. The major advantage of this configuration is in circuits where loads are relatively high (≥ 300 amperes).) shield or a copper tape shield.C. thus. Insulation.1 represents a typical primary cable used in underground distribution and is the configuration currently recommended. Variations of this design may be better suited to particular types of installations. and public safety problems. loss of neutral conductors caused deterioration of the semiconducting insulation shield and consequent cable failure. However. Source: Okonite Company. Source: Okonite Company. which describe individual components of underground cables in more detail. It was most often installed as a direct-buried cable. Shield. .5 2 – Se c t i on 2 2 • • • • • • Conductor. (Not RUS accepted.3: Medium-Voltage Power Cable with Tape Shield and L.3. except that it does not have a jacket over the concentric neutral. this cable design fell into disfavor because of substantial corrosion problems affecting the concentric neutral. single-conductor cable is illustrated in Figure 2. FIGURE 2. In addition. Conductor shield.1 is that the concentric neutral is replaced by a longitudinal corrugated (L.) Source: Okonite Company. Conductor Extruded Conductor Shield Conductor Extruded Conductor Shield Conductor Extruded Conductor Shield Insulation Insulation Insulation Extruded Insulation Shield Extruded Insulation Shield Encapsulated Neutral Conductors Extruded Insulation Shield Bare Neutral Conductors Metallic Tape Shield Jacket Jacket FIGURE 2. Another special case of the medium-voltage.1. 2006. A separate neutral conductor thus must be installed with a circuit to handle return currents.C. Figure 2. See Section 4 for more information on sheath currents and cable ampacity. Loss of the neutral wires led to an open neutral circuit. The following subsections. reliability. and Jacket. 2006.1.C. ensure an even voltage gradient within the cable. provide an understanding of desirable features for various applications. These are illustrated in Figure 2. It is identical in most respects to the cable in Figure 2. FIGURE 2. and exposure of the concentric neutral to the surrounding earth provided an excellent system ground.1: Jacketed Concentric Neutral Cable.2 shows the arrangement of an underground cable design widely used from the mid1960s to the late 1980s. Concentric neutral. posing serious operational. Insulation shield. Figure 2. The purpose of the L. shield or tape shield is to provide a path for capacitive currents and. The main difference from the cable in Figure 2. Use of bare concentric neutral cable is not approved by RUS for use on the systems of its borrowers and has essentially been discontinued except in cases where there are no corrosive conditions and special permission has been obtained.

001 inch).) 0.0005)2 π or 7.24 66. With a volume resistivity of 1. circular mil designations may also be applied to conductors of 4/0 AWG and smaller.1.1416 r = Radius (in inches) For Area in kcmil. Copper was the first material to play a major role in cable construction. it was not cost-effective because of the special precautions required during installation and maintenance.7854 Diameter (in.60 250.00** 1.460 0. 36 AWG. However. Empirical history sets the two endpoints: 4/0 AWG.000.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 5 3 2 Conductor Size Designations U.0 177. however.2 0. Area is calculated as shown in Equation 2.1 shows AWG.681 0. Therefore.4 107.2749 0.460 inch (4/0 AWG). TABLE 2. A few approximate relationships may be useful: • Each increase of three-gauge numbers doubles the area and the unit weight. Table 2.854 × 10-7 inch2.1: Dimensional Characteristics of Common Conductors (Standard Concentric-Lay).365 0. it compared favorably with .325 0. circular mil. In the late 1960s. which was formerly known as the Brown and Sharpe wire gauge.1045 0. and also halves the dc resistance. and metric designations for common conductor sizes used in North American distribution cables.000 circular mils or 1. some utilities briefly experimented with sodium as a conductor material. • Each increase of 10 gauge numbers multiplies the area and unit weight by 10.5891 0.460 inch. of 0.0 507.460 inch.575 0.0206 0. The oldest of these is the AWG.813 0. and also divides the dc resistance by 10. The second system is the circular mil designation. The AWG and circular mil systems are now limited to U.999 percent) state.00** 750. These materials have appeared in a variety of alloys. • Each increase of six gauge numbers doubles the diameter.000 inch.1662 0.854 × 10-4 inch2 in solid wire. has a circular mil equivalency of 211.152 Conductor Materials and Configuration MATERIALS Since the first cable system.673 × 10-7 ohm-meters (ohm-m) in its pure (99.S. and configurations. This system is typically used on conductors up through those with a diameter Equation 2. European designations are based on metric units of square millimeters (mm2). There are 39 equally divided steps between these two sizes.0050 inch. standards use two systems for designating conductor size.3927 0.600 cm and an area of 0.00** 500.1967 0. One cmil is (0.162 0. with a diameter of 0. a 4/0 AWG wire. tempers. It follows that 1.00** 350. with a diameter of 0. Each step in this gauge approximates the successive steps in the wire drawing process.10 211.258 0.0829 0. use Radius in 1/1.0 kcmil (formerly MCM) is equal to 7.5 67.0 in.3 33.0521 0.0 253.0 127. AWG 6* 2* 1/0* 2/0* 4/0* — — — — — * Solid ** Stranded kcmil 26. which is always used on conductors larger than 4/0 AWG.1662 inch2.36 105.00** Area mm2 13.60 133.S. only two conductor materials have played a significant role: copper and aluminum. which has a diameter of 0. and No. The AWG originated in the mid-19th century.1 A = πr2 where: A = Area in square inches π = 3.6 53. The circular mil system is based on the definition of a circular mil (cmil) as being the area of a wire with a diameter of one mil (0.0 380. and Canadian use.998 1.

To take advantage of this economic benefit.0 ksi 61. because high tensile strength was not usually required.2 1/2 Hard (H14/H24) 15. As an example. See Table 2. Comparing this resistivity with the previously mentioned copper volume resistivity shows that. To simplify the comparison of various conductors. special installations might use harder tempers.2: Conductor Physical and Electrical Characteristics. harddrawn copper has experienced an increase in tensile strength because of work hardening during the drawing process and its conductivity has fallen to 97. the ampacity of the higher conductivity copper conductors of equal size is approximately 1. in most cases. aluminum became cost-effective for applications in which physical size was not critical. especially for larger cables.0 ksi 61.6 times that of matching aluminum conductors. ksi = thousands of pounds per square inch other metals. As the tensile strength of materials increases. but. The use of this metal leads to a larger cross-sectional area and. the industry uses a measure of relative conductivity that compares a particular metal to annealed electrolytic copper.0 Hard Drawn (H19) 24. the high resistivity of natural surface oxides. CONDUCTOR TEMPER Both copper and aluminum conductors are available in various tempers that designate the relative hardness of the metal. Aluminum conductors have a volume resistivity of 2. These disadvantages included higher susceptibility to flexural fatigue. Connections were simple to make and corrosion resistance was good. Of course.7 Hard Drawn 49–67 ksi 97. consequently. other significant elements determine the exact cable ampacity.2 for a comparison of common conductor materials. with the rapid development of the aluminum industry in the first half of the 20th century.59 times the resistance of the same-size copper conductor.0 Aluminum 3/4 Hard (H16/H26) 17. and cold flow (creep). For economic reasons.5–29. for equal crosssectional areas. this would only be where high unit stresses would be imposed on the cable conductor during installation or perhaps during cable life. cables now used on underground systems are predominantly aluminum. the electric industry developed methods to overcome some of the other physical disadvantages of aluminum. Examples include mineshaft riser cables or cables for extremely long pulling . Whereas overhead conductors have generally used harder metal to increase tensile strength and reduce sags.724 × 10-7 ohm-m at a temperature of 20°C (68°F).0 Note.2 percent IACS.5 4 – Se c t i on 2 2 TABLE 2. Supplies were abundant and it could be economically fabricated.0–22. This flexibility not only makes fabrication easier but also improves installation handling. However. Copper Soft Drawn Rated Tensile Strength Conductivity (% IACS) — 100 Medium Drawn 42–60 ksi 96.7–97.0–20. Where high tensile strength is needed for cable pulling. Most copper power cables have used soft-drawn copper for its greater flexibility. Because thermal capacity of conductors and cables is a function of the heat generated by internal conductor losses. The lower conductivity is mainly caused by the inherently higher volume resistivity of pure annealed aluminum. the conductivity decreases. 1350H19 aluminum has a conductivity of about 61 percent IACS.0 ksi 61. These are discussed more extensively in Section 4 of this manual. greater overall cable dimensions. the additional cost of other project components— such as larger size conduit—does not outweigh the present economic advantage of aluminum conductors. However. By comparison. The volume resistivity of annealed copper is defined as 1.655 × 10-7 ohm-m. underground conductors have tended to use the lower tempers. This measure is referred to as the International Annealed Copper Standard (IACS). aluminum will have 1.

especially tensile strength.2. CONDUCTOR CONFIGURATION The wire and cable industry offers the electric utility industry a wide variety of standard conductor configurations. B-2. Aluminum conductors in power cables are generally furnished in the 3/4-hard temper. As the conductor cross section increases to 750 kcmil or greater. including solid conductor. various stranding arrangements. Because pure copper in its various tempers provides adequate mechanical strength for cable applications. Because there are no voids to fill. All characteristics of aluminum conductors. there will be no continuing migration of water through the insulation system. The same aluminum nomenclature system includes designations for temper. • Flexibility during operations (elbow switching). The difference between H16 and H26 tempers is that the H16 alloy is only strain-hardened. there is some acceptance of aluminum conductors in the 1/2-hard temper. if moisture does penetrate the insulation. Though the decision on conductor configuration alone will not provide the solution to any of these problem areas.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 5 5 2 distances in duct. Copper conductors are almost universally supplied as pure copper. Copper wire is covered by ASTM Specifications B-1. The alloy designation derives from the description of aluminum alloys in other applications in which such characteristics as high tensile strength are required. It was formerly designated as Alloy 1350. Solid conductor is preferred in smaller cable sizes because of its absolute waterblocking capability. Elements significantly affected by the conductor configuration include the following: • Flexibility during installation (cable bending and racking). and filled-strand conductors. Methods for measuring the most important characteristics of these and other materials can be found in other related ASTM standards. For example. These are also shown in Table 2. The H26 alloy has the same general characteristics. CONDUCTOR ALLOY Aluminum conductor material also is designated by an alloy number. singlestrand conductor. This provides a reasonable level of tensile strength. including B-231 (concentric lay conductors) and B-400 (compact round conductors). Pure copper provides the highest conductivity and. This gives adequate tensile strength while maintaining a higher degree of flexibility. it is a vital part of the larger process of selecting a cable that will provide high reliability and economy. Cable . More information on conductor characteristics can be found in reference books. The simplest configuration is the solid. The engineer selecting a cable design must consider these alternatives and select the option that produces the best cable for the particular application. therefore. As is well known. must be considered when specifying a cable. However. pure aluminum is generally used. because high electrical conductivity (low resistivity) is the single most important aspect of underground cable conductors. the stiffness of cable increases as conductor diameter increases. Nationally accepted specifications for electrical conductors are found in American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards. and • Longitudinal water migration. The specifying engineer must consider the mechanical stresses on the cable during installation and service. The inhibition of moisture migration is extremely important in reducing insulation deterioration problems so prevalent in underground cables. 3/4-hard temper has a classification of H16 or H26. Aluminum wire is covered by ASTM Specification B-230. but it has been partially annealed after strain hardening. Perhaps more important. and B-3. Such cables would require customized design for their particular circumstances and are beyond the scope of this manual. Aluminum conductors used in underground cable are addressed in other ASTM standards. it cannot migrate along the cable conductor to other areas of the cable. Each configuration has its own advantages. the highest efficiency. there is generally no need for alloyed copper conductors. The alloy designation for electrical aluminum is EC. while not introducing excessive ductility that would lead to creep problems in making durable connections.

Some of these are illustrated in Figure 2. Each layer of wires is laid in the opposite direction. 37-Wire the cable and provide an excellent path for moisture migration. In conventional stranding. the conductor metal will occupy only 76 to 78 percent of the area enclosed by a circle drawn around the outside of the conductor. The filled conductors smaller diameter of the individual strands lowers the total for reliability. the stranded conductors weigh more because the outer layers must be longer than the conductor axis. Details are contained in ASTM Standards B8 (copper) and B231 (aluminum). force required to achieve the necessary bending. especially where bending in confined spaces is required to . compressed strand. stranded conductors are advised. and 1 + 6 + 12 + 18 = 37. concentric round stranding. 37-Wire obviously produces interstices (voids) between the surfaces of the individual wires. stiffness will increase in proportion to the square of the diameter of the solid conductor.4: Concentric Lay Strand Options. The simplest stranded configuration is the Concentric Stranded Conductor. Table 2. the voids are continuous along Compact Concentric-Strand Conductor.3 compares the various stranding characteristics of a common single size of aluminum conductor.5. The reasonable upper limit for solid conductors with 3/4-hard aluminum conductors has generally been found to be 2/0 AWG. FIGURE 2. In addition. These are illustrated in Figure 2. and compact configurations. Several options in stranded conductors are available. The first option. the outside diameter of a stranded cable will be greater than for an equivalent solid conductor. The predominant combinations for conventional stranded cable are 1 + 6 = 7. 1 + 6 + 12 = 19.5 6 – Se c t i on 2 2 operate load-break connectors. a point will be reached at which the cable will become unmanageable.4. An examination shows that the im1 6 12 18 24 30 36 42 proved flexibility of higher stranding comes at Number of Wires Per Layer the expense of larger diameter. The number of wires in a concentric stranded conductor is defined in ASTM standards as the class of the conductor. Therefore. First. 37-Wire conventional concentric round stranding that uses multiple layers of circular wires. These interstices have two important effects. Above that size. The solution is the use of Use solid or strandstranded conductors. Compressed-Strand Concentric Conductor. Second.5: Standard Strand Arrangements for Multilayer Conductors. for a given equivalent metallic cross section of conductor. including conventional concentric lay. FIGURE 2.

it is important to stop the migration of any moisture that may find its way into the conductor. Often. The third conductor type (see Figure 2. more nearly cylindrical surface. These had several advantages over the butyl rubber primary voltage cables predominant in industrial applications. Therefore.460 0.0589 Overall Diameter (in. If this approach is used with proper controls.7 198. The strand filler is often applied to each of the inner layers during the stranding process. The cable diameter is reduced by about nine percent when compared with the same crosssectional area in a concentric round configuration.530 Weight lb.4311 0.1055 0. However.3: Configurations of 4/0 AWG Aluminum Conductor./1. is an improvement on the conventional strand arrangement. Stranding Class Number of Wires Solid A.7 DC Resistance Ω/mile @ 20°C 0. thus. Compressed strand reduces the diameter between one-half and three percent. FILLED-STRAND (SEALANT) CONDUCTOR As noted in the previous subsections on conductor configurations. the interstices should be filled while the outside of the conductor is left clean. the industry considered EPR cables to be premium-priced cables and they . The trend toward placing electric distribution lines underground was significantly aided in the 1960s by the wide acceptance in the United States of high-molecular-weight polyethylene-insulated cables.522 0. Cables constructed of HMWPE were introduced in 1948. the conductor is drawn after each layer is applied.4311 0.4).529 0. The material must be compatible with the conductor and the semiconducting strand (conductor) shield.4600 0.0756 0. the useful service life of underground cables has been reduced by moisture in the insulation system. Butyl rubber was introduced in 1944 for distribution cable systems. the conductor metal will occupy 81 percent to 83 percent of the area of a circle that encompasses the overall diameter. Impeding moisture migration is most economically accomplished by the addition of a strandfilling material during manufacture to fill all voids within the conductor. One disadvantage is some loss of flexibility because the outside layer is slightly more rigid.5 198. With this design. In compressed strand.1739 0.) 0.4228 0. this requirement means the strand filler will be essentially the same as the strand shield except for plasticizers added to improve viscosity.4) is the compact round design. AA B C D 1 7 19 37 61 Individual Wire Diameter (in.000 ft 194. Cable Insulation Materials OVERVIEW OF CABLE INSULATION MATERIALS Early cable insulation materials were mainly natural rubber compounds. compressed strand.7 198.528 0. which greatly reduces the interstices on each layer and brings the metallic cross section up to 92 to 94 percent. had access to the conductor/conductor shield interface. This configuration also gives a smoother.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 5 7 2 TABLE 2. EPR (ethylene propylene rubber) insulated cables became available for distribution systems.5 198. This has been particularly true where moisture has been present in the conductor interstices and.) 0.4311 The second stranding option.4311 0. The result is some reduction in diameter and some reduction in the interstices of the outer strand layer. This configuration is accomplished by drawing the completed conventional concentric round strand to compress the outer layer of strands after fabrication (see Figure 2. In the early 1960s. Paper insulation was introduced for power cables about 1890.

connected or ungrounded sys(TR-XLPE). which apweight polyethylene plies to most installations on (TR-HMWPE or TR-PE) and tests when selecting grounded systems. These insulation wall thicknesses are premature insulation breakdown in HMWPE caspecified by the ANSI/ICEA and are referred to bles contributed to the rapidly increasing accepas the 100 percent level. the reported failure rate of XLPE cables below.6 mm) for 25 kV. TR-HMWPE. In 1966. the system protecment was tree-retardant polyethylene (TR-PE) tion available. The initial ethylene material. HMWPE cable continued to be ments in insulation compounds and fabrication popular because of its better technical charactertechniques. History and accelerated life tests istics and lower cost. HMWPE possessed a low have shown EPR to be equal or superior to condielectric constant. fitting projects in which duct sizes are restricted just as HMWPE insulation did earlier. It was 1975 before XLPE tance in UD installations. and use this minimum 100 percent insureached one per 1. Since the 1960s. along with high dielectric temporary TR-XLPE compounds. TR-XLPE underground distribution market where initial proved to generally be the superior compound cost was the governing factor before the imporand gained much wider acceptance than did tance of long cable life was recognized. TR-HMWPE is no longer About 1963. cable insulation manufacturues listed above. For deltacross-linked polyethylene cable insulation. the reported HMWPE failure rate neers must use all available information when had reached about two per 1. The tree-retardant characteristic cables became available for distribution installaof the initial TR-XLPE compound was acquired tions in both concentric neutral and convenby adding organic compounds to the basic polytional power configurations. Cooperative engiyears. The choice of insulation ers began searching for methods to improve the thickness depends on the system connection (eilife of the product. Recognition of 35 kV. 260 mils bles rapidly escalated and reached almost eight (6. especially in the dicted by accelerated testing methods. insulating compounds will continue to also cost less than XLPE. In fact. these cable equaled HMWPE cable in market share for cables have also enjoyed technical improvedomestic utilities. was considered to be a significant problem. One hundred percent insulation wall thickSoon thereafter. the failure rate for HMWPE canesses are 175 mils (4. cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) manufactured. By 1970. and conduit fill may be exceeded. so named because it resisted the life. and 345 mils (8.4 mm) for 15 kV. EPR cables have seen wider accepoperating temperature. advantage of XLPE cable was that. Continuing tests will evaluate the reported failures of HMWPE-insulated cables. it is As a result of escalating polyethylene cable a thermosetting material with a higher allowable failure rates.5 8 – Se c t i on 2 2 improvement in cable life expectancy as predid not gain wide acceptance. Standards state that the growth of electrochemical 100 percent insulation level is “trees” which led to insulation satisfactory for any system failure. These have been introReview the results of where faults can be cleared duced in both high-molecularaccelerated cable life within one minute. These compounds tems. Because of concerns with the failure of Polymer insulation thicknesses are often inHMWPE and XLPE insulations to deliver the excreased to 133 percent or 173 percent of the valpected design life. It tion.000 milecable fabrication methods. Without quesstrength and very good insulation resistance. as discussed 1975. and the desire for longer cable compounds. In about 1980. some utilities improve.000 mile-years and selecting a cable for purchase. Many cable users spectance of XLPE as an insulating material. The initial major developther delta or wye connected). longevity of different cable compounds and The failure rate was about one per 1.000 mile-years by 1982. About ify an increased wall thickness.000 mile-years. like EPR. 133 percent insulation have exhibited a substantial .8 mm) for per 1. lation wall thickness only for upgrading or retrothe failure rate of XLPE cables rapidly escalated.

4: RUS Insulation Thickness. RUS is currently refining its Specifications for Underground Primary Cables in Bulletin No. Finally. One disadvantage of an increase in insulation thickness is that the additional insulation volume increases the opportunity for contamination. For this reason. 173 percent insulation is used for cables on a system. It should be noted that the performance of 175-mil direct buried distribution cables on 12. XLPE (thermosetting). Situations imposing mechanical stresses on cable include the following: • Soil pressure in direct-burial installations. RUS mandates the use of 133 percent insulation thickness (220 mil) for 15 kV class cables.2 kV systems proved unsatisfactory in early underground systems. which many utilities find advantageous. the additional insulation. See Figure 2. In this new bulletin. • Flexure during switching operations for elbow-connected apparatus. In addition.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 5 9 2 thickness is commonly chosen. and EPR (thermosetting). this is not a realistic concern for modern cable manufacturing facilities. the increased pulling and training effort. This is due to the increased cost of the cable. which may have a clearing time of more than one hour. This was particularly true in smaller (e. Hot Creep This is a measure of the plasticity of a material at elevated temperatures. However. The additional insulation thickness will also reduce the electrical stress within the insulation and. High-temperature aging evaluations usually compare tensile strength and elongation remaining after seven days (168 hours) of exposure to temperatures ranging from 120°C to 180°C (248°F to 356°F). The hot creep is determined by measuring the tensile stress (pounds per square inch. the 133 percent insulation level is recommended by standards where fault-clearing times on wyeconnected systems are in excess of one minute but less than one hour. and the increase in duct size required. dated December 22. and • External clamping action on risers. • Expansion/contraction in ducts. This was due to treeing of the insulation which could in part. Selecting a cable construction involves compromise as most materials have different strong and weak points.4 and these will be specified in the pending bulletin. the hot creep is generally measured at 130°C (266°F). High-Temperature Aging Characteristics Electrical insulation in power cables must retain good physical properties after being subjected to high temperatures. • Sidewall pressure on cables pulled into conduit. which updates and supersedes former Bulletin 50-70 (U1).g. It shows the ability of an insulating material to resist deformation at elevated operating temperatures. 1728F-U1. hence. Voltage Class (kV) 15 25 35 Insulation Thickness (mils) 220 260 345 Thickness Level (%) 133 100 100 .5/ 7. TABLE 2. For thermosetting insulations. 1987. RUS adopted the insulation thickness shown in Table 2. usually delta or resistance-grounded. be attributed to the higher voltage stresses present in the 175-mil insulation. #2 AWG) conductor sizes. Also. and jacket materials needed because of the increased diameter will increase the final installed cable cost. INSULATION MATERIAL CHARACTERISTICS An individual selecting a particular cable insulation should be familiar with the basic physical and electrical characteristics of various materials. prolong cable life.6 for a relative comparison of the hot creep of HMWPE (thermoplastic). shield. or psi) needed to stretch the insulation sample to 200 percent of its original length. which is the maximum emergency operating temperature. Some of the pertinent physical properties are listed below.. Each of these characteristics affects the suitability of an insulation material for a particular application. Physical characteristics of the insulating layer affect the resistance of a cable to mechanical damage under normal operating conditions.

Secondary cables have similar construction methods. or exceed. • Smoothness of the conductor shield and conductor. This sampling is beneficial because contaminated pellets are rejected before being extruded into the cable. and • Inclusion of agglomerates. Temperatures for Cable Insulation Materials. Equipment Loading. Some manufacturers inspect 100 percent of their product. • Adhesion between the insulation and the insulation shield. 250 20 75 90 130 Temperature (°C) FIGURE 2. industry standards must be made on each batch of pellets to ensure cleanliness. Basic electrical characteristics of cable insulation are discussed extensively in Section 4. The most complex manufacturer’s process involves primary voltage cables that have not only extruded insulation but also extruded conductor shields and extruded insulation shields. The cable manufacturer receives insulating and shielding materials. but employ only an insulating layer or. Adapted from ANSI/ICEA T-28-562. some plants use optical scanning to continuously sample pellets before they enter extruding equipment. Failure to adhere to any of these requirements at any point in the manufacturing process will lead to defective cable that is unsuitable for utility applications. as pellets. From this. In addition to normal quality control sampling. • Maintenance of uniform dimensions and concentricity along the cable. Electrical characteristics include insulation resistance.6 0 – Se c t i on 2 2 100% Hot Modulus EP XLPE HMWPE ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF INSULATION MATERIALS The electrical characteristics of cable insulation are just as important as the physical characteristics. and dielectric constant. Some of these are the following: • Purity of the insulation material. possibly two layers. gels. The manufacturing processes generally are similar for different insulation materials and different voltage classes. Many aspects of the manufacturing process are very important. the cable no longer serves its intended purpose. and ambers.6: Comparative Hot Creep vs. in the case of “ruggedized” styles. Insulation Fabrication All contemporary cables use extruded dielectric insulation. insulation power factor. These pellets must be handled very carefully at both the cable plant and at the insulation manufacturing plant to ensure there is no contamination. ultra clean. • Lack of voids in the insulation and shields. or . a new generation of XLPE and TR-XLPE materials that bear designations of extra clean. After all. • Cleanliness of the insulation–insulation shield interface. • Cleanliness of the conductor shield-insulation interface. • Smoothness of the insulation outer surface. Resin suppliers now employ online pellet inspection devices. if a cable is mechanically durable but will not withstand the applied voltage. particularly polyethylene compounds. MATERIAL HANDLING One of the most important requirements of cable manufacturing is cleanliness of the raw materials. Quality control tests that meet. • Adhesion between the conductor shield and the insulation.

delivery systems have dramatically improved over the past 15 years. it is also important to eliminate all possible sources of contamination during the manufacturing of not only the insulation system but also the conductor and insulation shields. Contamination is possible at any step along the way. improvement in the compounding and process design. many contaminants are missed. In addition. For example. as recent statistics suggest that even the cleanest compound can contain contaminants above 12 mils. especially airborne dust particles. and quality assurance and quality control improvements. similarly. resulting from better dispersion of the acetylene carbon black in the polymer base. locate. The material is then cured at the proper temperature for the proper time. nor is a comparison between compound manufacturers. Removal of contaminants starts at three mils and optimizes at 12 mils. the various shields and insulating layers are extruded over the conductor. as the material is opaque. Cable manufacturers. and monitoring each run for ambers and gels have improved manufacturing technology. Most manufacturers carry out optical pellet inspection. to raw insulation materials or to the cable during extrusion. pellet inspection devices are available for use at the cable manufacturer’s plant. EXTRUSION AND CURING PROCESSES During cable manufacture. Utility acceptance of the cleaner and smoother compounds has been rapid. The raw material is melted and the liquid polymer is pumped into a die that applies a continuous and uniform layer around the conductor. Polyethylene is manufactured by compound suppliers and shipped in pellet form to the cable manufacturers for extrusion onto the full-sized cable. as most utilities specified these materials in 2004. as well as dedicated. in turn. this latter device does provide an opportunity to identify. upgrading reactor clean out and defouling procedures. Materials should be exposed as little as possible to the ambient air in the plant. have implemented materials-handling systems to prevent contamination during the course of manufacture. The opaque nature of EPR does not permit a similar determination of cleanliness. In addition. the pellet inspection should take place as close to the manufacturer’s extruder head as possible and not contribute to further contamination. Better dispersed semiconducting shields provide for a much smoother interface between the insulation and the shields. sealed rail cars in good condition. leading to much longer service life. have minimum possible exposure to an uncontrolled environment during the extrusion process. Although interfacial inspection does not occur until after the cable is manufactured. However. This means controlling the contact of possible contaminants. Using dedicated reactors. Tape inspection devices can also be used for surface inspection of extruded EPR sample tapes. filtrating all process air and water. and operating under a sealed loop strategy have helped to ensure a better product. Class 1000 clean rooms have been installed in most cable manufacturing plants and separate handling facilities for insulation and semiconductor materials have been implemented. Inspection of EPR is more difficult. . a precise definition of each designation based on per-unit volume contamination is not available. Also available are inspection devices for gels in polymers and for small defects in interfaces. handling systems now use gravity feed and dense phase. Needless to say. and remove interfacial problems before shipment. All models come with a self-enclosed air filtration system that provides a Class 1000 environment under a plastic curtain surrounding the unit. cable interface surfaces should. Increasing the raw material cleanliness. Although inspection for contaminants is important. Supersmooth semiconducting shields were first introduced in 1988. This process is repeated for various layers until the desired cable configuration is achieved. Polyethylene manufacturers have focused on material purity. The inspection devices remove loose contaminants and surface contaminants as well as pellets containing embedded contaminants. In addition. Ideally.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 6 1 2 super clean has emerged. but usually only about two percent of the total amount of compound is inspected. and these may be removed with 100 percent pellet inspection. Currently.

Figure 2.000 parts per million) within the insulation. It is suspected that this insulation water content may contribute to the development of water trees within polyethylene. Older systems used high-pressure steam for curing. where the shields and insulation are applied. However. the cable enters a cooling zone. where the extruded polymers are cured at a temperature between 218°C (425°F) and 293°C (560°F). Pressure in the curing tubes is also maintained between 150 and 300 psi. The significance of the lower water content is still the subject of continuing investigation. Steam curing is the oldest cross-linking or vulcanizing method employed in any continuous vulcanizing (CV) plant. The cured insulation is then cooled under pressure by cold water. After curing. especially for polyethylene-based cables. commonly referred to as a water bath or quenching.6 2 – Se c t i on 2 2 Expediency and quality in cable manufacture can be achieved if the extrusion of different layers is performed simultaneously. This temperature and pressure is maintained long enough for cross-linking to take place in the insulation and/or shields. The industry uses multiple simultaneous extrusion processes. The methods used to cure and cool the cable during manufacture are the subject of much research.7: General Layout of a Cable Extrusion Line. the industry has widely accepted the desirability of dry nitrogen gas curing. Some newer equipment uses dry nitrogen as a heat transfer agent in the curing tube. Bare o duct Con r Pay-Off Reel Take-Up Reel . The result is lower water content (200 ppm) in the insulation. The conductor enters the process from the pay-off reel. The conductor first passes through the extrusion heads. some new production lines use dry gas cooling. which eliminates insulation contact with water until it has solidified. The few cable production lines that use dry gas for both curing and cooling achieve even lower water content (50 ppm). which led to higher water content (5. Most EPRs are still made with steam curing in a CV catenary process. In steam curing. Extrusion Area – Conductor Shield – Insulation – Insulation Shield Curing Tube Water Cooling Insulated Cable FIGURE 2. The cable then enters the curing tube. the freshly extruded cable passes down the center of a long vulcanizing tube filled with saturated steam at about 20 atmospheres (300 pounds per square inch gauge (psig)) pressure and temperature of about 215°C (419°F). However.7 shows the general layout of a cable extrusion line. It is believed that the very lowest water contents are maintained in service only if the cables are completely sealed from moisture.

A sure as the curing section to prevent void formadisadvantage of this arrangement is the open tion in the insulation. A dry cured insulation space between the application point for the concontains voids in the order of 100/mm3.8(a).8: Typical Extrusion Methods.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 6 3 2 Conductor Shield Insulation Insulation Shield Insulated Conductor with Bare Conductor Conductor Shield Added Insulated Conductor Insulated Conductor Insulation Shield First Pass (a) 2 Pass or Dual-Tandem Method Second Pass Insulation Conductor Shield Insulation Shield Bare Conductor Conductor Shield Added Insulated Conductor with Insulation Shield (b) 1 + 2 Triple-Tandem Method Conductor Shield Insulation Shield Bare Conductor Insulated Conductor with Insulation Shield Insulation (c) 3-in-1 Triple Method FIGURE 2. 33 percent . whereas steam curing conductor shield surface can be contaminated generates voids of 105/mm3. ture can be as high as 300°C (572°F). on the other advantage in the dry cure techhand. The infrared For UD cable production. The cured Extrusion heads are continuing to evolve. 1 to 50 µm in size. 1 to 10 ductor shield and that for the insulation. by airborne particles. The cable surface temperais most common. psig) pressure. Of the remainder. the cable Sixty percent of the investor-owned utilities now must be returned to a separate extrusion line specify dry curing. Most utilities that speccally heated tube filled with extrusion ify EPR insulation request high-purity nitrogen gas at steam curing or do not specify about 10 atmospheres (150 is preferred. The cable is cooled by passing through a cooling simplest head configuration is the two-pass (or section containing water under the same presdual-tandem) process shown in Figure 2. In addition. energy emitted by the hot the triple extrusion and the dry tubes is transferred to the cure technology with the catenary arrangement cable components. consists of an electriTrue triple-tandem nology. The µm (micrometers) in size. a curing method at all. are EPR users who gain little Dry curing.

This combination produces the greatest insulation system component compatibility. the triple crosshead is now generally accepted in the industry because it minimizes the chance of damage and contamination at the shields and insulation interfaces. a semiconducting XLPE would be applied for both the conductor shield and the insulation shield. For instance. Most manufacturers use EVA for these shields. Most utilities now specify this extrusion method.6 4 – Se c t i on 2 2 for installation of the insulation shield. This is also an opportunity for contamination of a critical interface surface. particles of semiconducting polymer might be left inside electrical connections that would . The insulation shield eliminates nonuniform voltage gradients in the insulation caused by irregular contacts with grounded objects. Here. The preferred material is a semiconducting version of the material used for the cable insulation. Similarly. This more uniform surface was particularly important for gaining cable reliability with polyethylene cable insulation. Though there is still a chance for airborne contamination between the conductor shield head and the insulation/insulation shield head. Before the general acceptance of extruded dielectric cables. shields allow thinner insulation sections to be used with more predictable results. cables insulated with ethylene propylene rubber could have a semiconducting EPR compound or a similar compound. Because this zone has the highest electrical stresses in the cable and voids will produce insulation deterioration under electrical stress. Present practice in extruded insulation cables uses extruded conductor and insulation shields almost exclusively. All three compounds are extruded simultaneously in one location in a completely enclosed head [see Figure 2. CONDUCTOR SHIELD For maximum effectiveness. which allows the most uniform possible distribution of electrical stress. the preferred extrusion method is the triple crosshead line or the true triple-head extruder. the conductor shield and the insulation shield both usually consisted of carbonloaded cotton tape. The conductor shield is particularly important in reducing stress concentrations caused by stranded conductors or imperfections on the conductor surface.8(b). Simultaneous extrusion eliminates the opportunity for contamination of any interface surface. it is particularly important to have the minimum number of possible voids in this location. extruded shields gained favor. The extruded conductor shield material should strip freely from the conductor without leaving residue to facilitate cable splicing. Today. so that the insulation and the semiconductive shields are extruded simultaneously over the conductor. With the advent of extruded polyethylene dielectrics. Other combinations may be used if elasticity and tensile strength characteristics are compatible. These tapes improved the surface contour of conventional stranded conductors and were generally suitable for use with paper and rubber insulation compounds. By producing a more uniform electrical stress distribution. if the cable is insulated with cross-linked polyethylene. as shielding material. The latest extrusion configuration is the true triple-head unit. These could be applied at a lower cost and produce a more uniform surface than could semiconducting cloth tapes.8(c)]. Otherwise. A major improvement in cable extrusion is the development of the 1 + 2 triple-tandem arrangement. With its successful development and commercialization. Conductor Shields and Insulation Shields Conductor shields and insulation shields share the function of providing a uniform cylindrical surface on either side of the cable insulation. there is no chance of contamination on the insulation surface. such as ethyl vinyl acetate (EVA). This line features one common crosshead connecting three extruders. It is particularly important to have very similar coefficients of thermal expansion to minimize the generation of thermal stresses within the cable at extreme operating temperatures. the conductor shield should be firmly bonded to the cable insulation to minimize voids at the interface between these two components. the insulation and the insulation shield are extruded simultaneously as shown in Figure 2.

but the total life-cycle cost of make splicing much more difficult. which must be done very carefully to keep a uniform cylindrical outer surface on the insulation. the cable purgood contact with the insulation. Therefore. Current concentrations under number of tree initiation sites in the section of the concentric neutral strand also make it imporinsulation with the highest electrical stresses.9). equipotencause of the extremely high electrical stresses in tial surface. Firm bonding the cable may be lower because the cable failwill require cutting the shield from the insulaure rate may be reduced. developed the concept of a suty is particularly important where a concentric persmooth conductor shield that produces an neutral configuration is used with conductors extruded conductor shield with a much more spaced around the cable circumference. The cable industry metallic shield tape or conductors. Betant to keep shield resistivity low. cause reducing irregularities and voids in this The cable insulation shield must maintain area will yield longer cable life. Such materials may be slightly produce ideal electrical properties. This significantly reduces the (see Figure 2. Voids of shield will also remain in close up to three mils (0. Tree inception at these points is befective shield and produce a uniform. but it will more expensive. If the insulation shield is vanced conductor shield systems with improved firmly bonded to the insulation.18 mm) into the shield of a compatible material insulation interface. the insulation shield The cable insulation shield forms a cylindrical should be free-stripping. In addition. that most electrochemical trees begin at voids or The cable insulation shield must have unvaryprotrusions near the conductor shield/insulation ing conductivity characteristics to serve as an efinterface. to maintain acceptable electrical perinsulation. Most electrochemical ANSI/ICEA Specification Therefore. The cable sulation. the insulation shield must carry cable insulation are reduced in size and quanticurrents transversely as well as radially.076 mm) are allowed at this contact when the cable is operated at extremely interface. an extruded semitrees begin at voids S-94-649-2000 allows the conconducting insulation shield is ductor shield/insulation interinstalled to evenly distribute or protrusions near face to have protrusions of electrical stresses. Under uniform cylindrical surface. Protrusions into the these conditions. An extruded the conductor shield/ seven mils (0. this bond will smoothness. where splicing or terminations INSULATION SHIELD are required frequently. conductor shield and five mils will tightly adhere to the insu(0. it is impractical to achieve and mainformance. ducting metallic shield directly outside the cable However. even when the cable is if standard conductor shield bent or compressed. Although it is cable use.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 6 5 2 unacceptably impair conducavoid stress concentrations or tivity within the connections. This capabilihas. Research on cable failures has shown design temperatures. yet be easy to chaser should strongly consider using the adremove during splicing. tion. theoretically possible to place a uniform conthat may require special stripping characteristics. The conty.127 mm) into the insulation. lation. which is essential to avoid nonuniform specifier should note any special conditions of electrical stresses in the insulation. Removal should leave semiconducting surface on the outside of the inno residue on the insulation surface. The thicknesses are used. corona-producing voids. certain minimum stripping force will tain the continuous intimate contact required to . therefore. Typical interface irregularities for these imcentric neutral configuration makes the distance proved conductor shield materials are approxitraveled by the capacitive currents greater and mately one percent of the size found in convenmakes shield uniformity even more important tional shields. the insulation shield these regions and because these irregularities must carry the cable capacitive currents between serve as stress amplifiers when they produce a the insulation shield interface and the grounded nonuniform electrical field. such as low splicing temperatures.

) 3 6 0 Maximum Removal Tension (lb. TABLE 2. CONCENTRIC NEUTRALS AND CONDUCTIVE METALLIC SHIELDS Shielded cable systems require not only a semiconducting insulation shield but also a conductive metal shield to function properly. Firmly bonded insulation shields should never be used on underground residential systems where cables are frequently terminated. insulation-damaging corona might be produced at the insulation interface. However. Doing so will produce optimum electrical performance. the installation crews may have to warm the insulation shield to an acceptable temperature for splicing and termination. However. If the minimum bonding is not maintained.5. be required. especially in cable bends. as shown in Table 2. less extra labor will be needed to make splices.5: Insulation Shield Strippability Ratings. If a cable system is going to be used in an installation requiring especially high reliability and few splices or terminations. The major functions of the conductive metal shield are the following: • To serve as a grounding means for the semiconducting insulation shield to keep all sections at constant potential. Because good adherence is necessary for satisfactory electrical performance.) 18 16 16 . If long cable pulls are used. the specifier may use a firmly bonded extruded insulation shield. Cable Insulation Type EPR TR-XLPE Discharge Resistant Minimum Removal Tension (lb. the specifier should always remember that long-term performance of the cable is the most important criterion and special installation techniques may be needed under low-temperature conditions. crews must be specially trained and proper tools must be obtained to make satisfactory splices. Pending RUS 1728F-U1 specifications for primary cables call for minimum and maximum tension ratings for “strippability” of insulation shields.9: Capacitive and Dielectric Loss Current Flow in Insulation Shield. The metal shield is in intimate contact with the semiconducting insulation shield. before starting installations of this type. the cable specifier may wish to cite special conditions in the cable specification and call for special low-temperature stripping tests. Slightly different limits for stripping tension are used in the sample cable specification contained in Appendix E. If such conditions are frequently encountered.6 6 – Se c t i on 2 2 Concentric Neutral Strand Semiconducting Insulation Shield Capacitive Current Flow Concentric Neutral Strand Insulation Strand Shield Conductor Semiconducting Insulation Shield FIGURE 2.

Doing so is feasible and tribution system in which the cable is installed. three neutrals are are given below. Examples of typical shield configurations • In a three-phase circuit. All other factors the central conductor (full neutral). Table 2. particularly in the cable failure or a malfunction of the electric dislarger conductor sizes.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 6 7 2 • To serve as a path for to one-half (reduced neutral) currents generated by of the phase conductivity. Having full conductivity in the neutral reduces circuit voltage drop. The sysAll these functions are extremely important. connected in parallel. between the energized conductor and the Full-capacity concentric neutrals are most cable exterior. To fulfill this second function. drain wire. tem neutral-to-earth voltage under both normal loads and fault conditions is reduced as well. losses in the cable neutral are will have a neutral conductivity equal to that of caused by circulating currents. system neutral return Concentric neutral conductors serve a dual role current should be near zero. dielectric failure. and often used on smaller cables that are applied in • To serve as a system neutral (in some cases). CONCENTRIC NEUTRALS • In a three-phase system. or L. Typical Neutral Configuration Conductor Size #2 AWG Aluminum 1/0 AWG Aluminum 4/0 AWG Aluminum 350 kcmil Aluminum 500 kcmil Aluminum 750 kcmil Aluminum Full Capacity 10 × 14 AWG 16 × 14 AWG 13 × 10 AWG 20 × 10 AWG N/A N/A One-Third Capacity 6 × 14 AWG 6 × 14 AWG 11 × 14 AWG 18 × 14 AWG 16 × 12 AWG 20 × 9 AWG One-Sixth Capacity One-Twelfth Capacity N/A N/A N/A 14 × 16 AWG 20 × 16 AWG 30 × 16 AWG N/A N/A N/A N/A 10 × 16 AWG 10 × 14 AWG . Mechanical as well as cable failures. typical with flat tape. thereby reducing as a conductive cable shield and a circuit neuthe cross-sectional area required to maintain tral. system neutral or the electrical considerations genersurrounding earth. ally mandate that concentric • To serve as an interceptor neutral conductors be copper. the shield low system losses and neutral-to-earth volt(neutral) has a much larger cross section than is ages under reasonably balanced conditions. shield • In a three-phase cable system with interconconfigurations.C. The conductive shield’s failure to properly perReduced neutral capacities are most often form any of these functions will lead to either a used on three-phase circuits. desirable because of the following: A wide variety of conductive shield configurations have been developed for use on cable systems.6: Concentric Neutral Configurations for Common Aluminum Cables. or one-third TABLE 2.6 shows concentric neutral sizes often • To provide a grounded metallic object used on distribution cables. of system fault currents in case of a even if the central cable conductor is aluminum. Typical concentric neutral cables nected neutrals. single-phase circuits. which reduces the cross section required to produce a full-capacity system neutral to one-third on each cable. This Defects in the shield capacitive coupling enables the cable to function system will cause between the central without a separate neutral conconductor and the ductor.

Longitudinally Corrugated Shield The L. The circuit ampacity of full-neutral cables in three-phase circuits is also reduced because of these shield losses. The tube generally does not have a metal-to-metal connection with the cable insulation shield at this point because allowance must be made for the cable insulation to thermally expand during operation at elevated temperatures. The shield generally consists of a copper sheet that is installed with its major axis parallel to that of the cable. shield thicknesses of eight or 10 mils can be furnished. Because of the small cross section. Use of L. It is somewhat better than helically applied copper tape shields because the length of the straight joint is less than the helical joint. However. shields as the system neutral will require evaluation of available system fault currents and protective system clearing times. these losses are lower where there is less neutral conductivity. The tape is usually installed with a 12. This problem is significant in larger cable sizes. Therefore. in mils L = Overlap of tape. shields are commonly available in five-mil thickness but. Additional information on circuit ampacity rating for various neutral configurations is given in Section 4. the conductivity of flat copper tape shields is relatively low compared with the central cable conductor.005-inch) thick copper tape helically applied over the semiconducting insulation shield. in cmils b = Tape thickness.C. Tape shields may be fabricated from bare copper or may be tinned copper. Equation 2. but all dielectrics have a substantially higher coefficient of thermal expansion than that of copper. A cable with a one-third neutral has 53 percent of the losses of a cable with a full-capacity neutral if the cables are spaced 7. Moreover. Not only is the temperature change higher in the insulation than it is in the cable shield. The seal applied between the two sides of the copper is usually an adhesive elastomer. Equation 2. shield has been developed as a way to provide greater conductivity in larger cables. the losses on a circuit with 7. It is clearly superior to concentric neutral configurations for water vapor transmission.C. a tight fit must be maintained at all times. in mils . Circumferential corrugations are fabricated in the resulting tube to add flexibility and ensure that the shield will uniformly bend with the cable. L. Flat Copper Tape This is perhaps the oldest conductive shield configuration. For instance. on a 350-kcmil circuit carrying 390 amperes.4 kW/1. Because the metallic shield must have good contact with the semiconducting insulation shield to function effectively.5 percent overlap.2 gives the effective cross-sectional area of an overlapped tape.C. shield does provide a limited degree of resistance to water vapor transmission.6 8 – Se c t i on 2 2 being equal. the elastomeric seal cannot be depended on to prevent moisture from migrating into the cable insulation.C.5-inch cable spacing will drop from 12 kW/1. the insulation expansion is accommodated by flexibility in the elastomeric seal. The return of the shield to intimate contact as the cable cools is assisted by the external insulating jacket. in mils dm = Mean diameter. in mils W = Width of tape.000 feet to 6. Accessories such as shield (neutral) bonding clamps must also be carefully evaluated for long-term continuous current and fault current capacity. Elevated losses and reduced ampacities are not generally a problem on three-phase circuits of 1/0 AWG aluminum or smaller if the cables are grouped in a single trench. for applications requiring additional fault current capability. The tape generally consists of a five-mil (0. under static pressure. shields should be sized to carry expected system neutral currents. The sheet is then folded around the cable and sealed to itself on the opposite side. L. The L. although.000 feet if a one-third neutral is used instead of a full-capacity neutral. the elastomer at the lap point does provide a better seal. particularly if the cables are not closely grouped.2 A = 4bdm × W 2(W – L) where: A = Cross-sectional area.C.5 inches center to center.

Furthermore. The neutral size ensures the ability to adequately conduct fault currents until protective devices operate. the concentric neutral strands were laid over the semiconducting insulation shield and no jacket was applied. especially where soil resistivity was low. using this type of cable to lessen rodent damage has had mixed results. The jacketed configuration reduces access of moisture and corrosive agents to the neutral. thereby reducing current in the concentric neutral and circuit voltage drop. flat-strap neutrals should not be depended on to prevent rodent damage. the cooperative engineer must give special attention to system grounding if jacketed cables are used. this arrangement had the advantage of exposing the concentric neutral conductors to the surrounding soil. The low resistance between the neutral and earth will significantly reduce the touch potential at the dig-in site. However. Most important. These problems are all related to corrosion of the exposed cable neutral. Cable identification also acquires additional importance. Therefore. The result was a very effective ground. Each of these arrangements has an advantage for a particular set of installation conditions. the neutral was completely corroded and the only neutral current path was through ground rods. Bare Concentric Neutral The first widely accepted concentric neutral cables were of a bare concentric neutral (BCN) configuration. Flat-Strap Concentric Neutrals Flat-strap concentric neutrals. the use of BCN cable has been discontinued except in very special conditions. See Section 5 in the Design Manual for detailed information on system grounding. the low resistance between the neutral and earth reduced neutral-to-earth voltages during both normal operations and fault conditions. These straps are about 0. Conductivity of flat-strap neutrals is generally equal to that of the energized conductor. In other cases. The complete metallic coverage on a cable was originally believed to lessen damage from gophers. . consist of helically applied flat copper straps. it is unfortunate that there are major durability problems with this design under many installation conditions.175 inches wide.025 inches (20 to 25 mils) thick and about 0.150 to 0. The low resistance between neutral and earth meant more of the system neutral current could return to the source by way of the earth. In this design.020 to 0. the electric utility industry began using the jacketed concentric neutral (JCN) configuration. In many cases.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 6 9 2 CONCENTRIC NEUTRAL CONFIGURATIONS As experience has been gained with underground installations under a variety of conditions. JCN design has achieved wide acceptance as a solution to the concentric neutral corrosion problem. Therefore. In light of all the advantages of BCN cables. the utility industry has developed several specialized variations of the basic concentric neutral configurations. However. not to be confused with flat-tape metallic shields. The straps are applied so they abut each other and provide 90 percent metallic coverage over the outside of the cable. When the cable was directly buried. the neutral had a significantly reduced cross section after only a few years of service. the concentric neutral physical arrangement ensures the object penetrating the cable will have established a good neutral connection before contacting the energized center conductor. The higher conductivity of the concentric neutral will produce lower voltages on the neutral at the fault location. as jacketed cables are approximately the same dimension and general appearance as many communication cables and water lines. Flat-strap concentric neutrals have found greatest acceptance in areas where rodents damage direct-buried cables. This condition was totally unsatisfactory from the standpoints of system safety and reliability. Jacketed Concentric Neutral Because of the very serious problems experienced with BCN cables. Insulating jackets also interrupt the flow of galvanic corrosion currents between the neutral and other metallic objects. This configuration has most of the major advantages of the BCN design except for continuous contact of the neutral with earth. Recent research shows that rodent damage is more effectively limited by increasing the diameter of the object. The bare concentric neutral is also considered the best possible arrangement for personnel safety in case of a dig-in.

For durability during periods of centric neutral cable manufacture. Also. es. the steel was galvanized. trals was copper with a tin or tin-lead alloy coatAnother approach that was used for a limited ing. the cable jacket is the outermost that the aluminum neutrals would resist many layer of material that serves as a barrier to moistypes of soil-induced corrosion. the need for coating neutral wires ration required sacrificial anodes or impressed has disappeared. However. Because cable jackets are not absolutely moisture proof. Because this cable to existing systems that already had concentric neutral cables never employ soldered extensive exposure of bare copper concentric connections and butyl rubber is no longer used neutrals. Systems containing this cable configufor insulation. even in a jacketed configurahas always been copper. see Section 7. Although some laboratory studies showed In most cables. tinned copper atmospheric exposure. electric cable installations. when the only advantage to be gained is generally accepted wire for bare concentric neuslight savings in initial material cost. and the coated copper faUtilities also experienced difficulty in applying cilitated soldering of these thin shields. even an encapsulated aluminum neutral conductor may be subject to long-term Concentric Neutral Materials deterioration from moisture migration. It is with a heavy steel coating completely surroundgenerally believed that. whether bare or jacketed. As experience has been gained with a wide time to try to solve the bare concentric neutral variety of materials. all power cable designs includaluminum should never be used as an exposed ed a jacket. For additional information on the concentric neutrals. tinned copper was used neutral. This is an advantage where space is limited. a few utilities briefly experimented with aluminum concentric neutral cables. These were applied in a bare configuraCABLE JACKET tion. with the advent of the exconcentric neutral in direct-buried or conduit tensive underground residential programs. it is improved quite the opposite. the complete cable diameter will be less. field experience ture and mechanical damage. actually led to higher corrosion rates. principles of cathodic protection.7 0 – Se c t i on 2 2 Experience with low-voltage insulated cables has shown Always specify that aluminum conductors can copper for concentric be extremely susceptible to corrosion. Therefore. It is unOther Than Copper wise to consider aluminum neutral conductors The predominant material in concentric neutrals for primary cables. Therefore. The thickness of the flat strap is less than the diameter of the neutral wires. In some cases. The exposed steel greatly simplified the apsulation was used and tinning was needed to plication of cathodic protection systems to the avoid corrosion. The particular configuraconductors was not necessary and. the conductor used in this on earlier cables because of the prevalence of neutral construction did carry a premium price. . Bare copper wires are now voltage rectifiers applied to provide protection uniformly accepted as the preferred material for to the neutral. engineers have determined corrosion problem was the use of a composite that the coating of the copper concentric neutral copper/steel conductor. soldered connections. even if they are inneutral conductors. For many years. in some castion used a copper center core for conductivity. sulated from the surrounding environment. the tion. that was a earth in the direct-buried cables instead of copholdover from cables on which butyl rubber inper. utilities began installing bare concentric neutral Flat-strap neutral cables should be jacketed. During the mid-1970s. However. It became obvious that For many years. in the early days of coning the copper. concentric neutrals gained wide acceptance beThis cross-sectional arrangement offered the defcause most flat-tape metallic shields were tinned inite advantage of having steel exposed to the on jacketed cables. failure of these cables. The very complex inportant to optimize the design and materials of teractions present on an interconnected neutral the jacket to obtain maximum performance in passing through a variety of soils led to early these important areas.

Today. In directburied applications and outdoor conduit installations. Jackets can be either insulating or semiconducting. ** PVC can be specially compounded to pass the Cable Tray Fire Test. The table shows that polyethylene is preferable in almost all categories except fire resistance. Recognizing this. . This material has the best balance of properties for use on underground utility cables. a low coefficient of friction with the conduit material is desirable.8 1. Desirable characteristics include abrasion resistance.7: Comparison of Jacketing Material Test Data. Both of these factors were able to strongly influence UD cable life because of the lack of a high-quality cable jacket. utilities installed BCN UD cables.0 350 350 160 * Based on Union Carbide 7708.000 Btu/Hr • Cable Tray Fire Test Low Temperature Properties Cold Bend Test • Temperature Passed (°C) Chlorine Content (%) Thermal Stability • Initial Temperature of Decomposition (°C) 2. particularly in conjunction with surrounding moisture. European and Japanese utilities continued to install only jacketed cables. although U.7 shows a comparison of important properties of various compounds. Table 2. most utilities specify an outer jacket. the U. and low moisture permeability. Semiconducting Polyethylene* 1. These utilities have experienced much higher distribution system cable reliability than has been typical in the United States. A wide variety of chemical components have been used successfully for cable jacketing. at 70. will be detrimental to XLPE and EPR insulating compounds as well as copper neutrals or other metallic shield materials. electric utility industry now mainly uses jacketed cables. It is worth noting that. TABLE 2.920 350 0. or they may be JCN cables. If cable is being pulled into a conduit system. Low chlorine content is an advantage because hydrogen chloride may result from these compounds at the emergency operating temperature of 130°C (266°F).5 >10 Fail Fail Fail** -40 0 -50 0 -10 22.S. the jacket material is very important.730 620 Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) 1. Engineers eventually learned that the accelerated failure rate of UD cable was largely caused by cable moisture and/or concentric neutral corrosion. This gas. this compromise is acceptable. flexibility.Cable Se l e c t i o n – 7 1 2 cables. The material most desirable for jacketing is linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE). Under any circumstances.S.700 450 Polyethylene (PE) Physical Properties • Tensile Strength (psi) • Elongation Moisture Transmission 7 Days in 70°C (158°F) Water • Grams/m2/24 hours Flame Resistance 20 Min. These may be conventional power cables with flat-tape or drainwire shields. This design eliminated the cable jacket so that the BCN could establish conductive contact with the earth in a direct-buried installation.

7 2 – Se c t i on 2

TABLE 2.8: Static Coefficient of Friction for Jacketing Materials in PVC Conduit.
Polyvinyl Chloride 0.69 Cross-Linked High-Molecular-Weight Polyethylene Polyethylene (XLPE) (HMWPE) 0.75 0.42 Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (LLDPE) 0.42

Another important characteristic of jacketing materials is the coefficient of friction in common pulling situations. Table 2.8 shows the static coefficient of friction of various jacket materials in PVC conduit. Jacket materials used on utility systems should always be sunlight-resistant. Very few installed utility cables have no part of the cable ever exposed to sunlight. Therefore, most cable jacketing compounds will be colored black to eliminate sunlight penetration and, thereby, enhance the natural durability of the basic jacket compound. Jacket Configurations There are two main physical arrangements for cable jackets. The first significant jacket configuration is the encapsulating jacket. This arrangement surrounds the concentric neutral conductors with the jacketing compound. The jacket is extruded directly over the concentric neutral strands. The jacket material fills all areas between concentric neutral strands and establishes close contact with the semiconducting insulation shield. Adequate jacket thickness is placed over the outside of the strands to minimize the chance of strand exposure during installation. The advantage of this encapsulated neutral design is that no spaces exist between neutral strands to allow movement of moisture along the cable. Therefore, any penetration will allow moisture in only one small spot, and probably will expose only one neutral strand at this location. Limiting moisture exposure to only one strand of the concentric neutral will reduce the potential for loss of neutral continuity. The second jacket configuration is an extruded jacket that overlays the metallic shield or concentric neutral. In this arrangement, the jacket is often separated from the tape shield,

drain wires, or concentric neutral by a nonadhering tape. This tape keeps the two layers entirely separate. Where drain wires or concentric neutrals are used under the jacket, this method leaves an annular (ring-shaped) space between the semiconducting insulation shield and the outside jacket. Although this space does contain the metallic wire shield, the spaces between strands become a reservoir for moisture that may enter the jacket through gradual absorption, manufacturing defects, or installation-induced damage. This space also provides an excellent path for migration of moisture along the length of the cable. This moisture is extremely detrimental to the cable by its promotion of electrochemical treeing in the insulation. This moisture also facilitates corrosion attacks on metallic shield strands. Although this jacket configuration is satisfactory for use with metal tape shields, it should not be used with concentric neutral cables that will frequently be exposed to moisture. Semiconducting Jackets The use of insulating jackets on direct-buried cable improves most performance characteristics, with one major exception. Use of an insulating jacket deprives the concentric neutral of its conductive contact with the surrounding earth, thereby relegating all system neutral grounding to driven rods or other electrodes installed along the circuit route. To improve cable grounding with its attendant benefits, a semiconducting cable jacket was introduced. The jacket consists of a semiconducting compound that is extruded in an encapsulating jacket (embedded neutral) configuration. The constructed cable has a radial resistivity of less than 100 meter-ohms and is, therefore, comparable to the conductivity of most soils. This ensures neutral-to-earth current transfer comparable to that of a BCN design. The improvement of conductivity provided by semiconducting jackets between the concentric neutral and the surrounding earth is a significant improvement in overall UD system design. However, there are some disadvantages to the semiconducting jackets. These disadvantages are principally associated with the greater moisture transmission rate of the semiconducting polyethylene compound. The first semiconducting jackets

Cable Se l e c t i o n – 7 3

had moisture transmission rates approximately 12 times that of LLDPE. At that level, moisture could penetrate the jacket and collect adjacent to the concentric neutral strands. There the moisture had the potential to serve as an electrolyte, forming a galvanic cell between the copper neutral and the carbon in the semiconducting jacket. This could result in deterioration of the neutral. Another aspect of the semiconducting jacketed cable design concerns the possibility of mechanical damage to the jacket during installation, exposing the neutral conductors directly to the soil. In this case, there is the potential for the galvanic attack to be more severe because the ratio of exposed surface areas of the carbon to copper is much greater. There also previously existed concern that the galvanic cell existing between the semiconducting jacket and interconnected subterranean steel objects might be detrimental to the steel. Examples of such objects are anchors, telephone pedestals, and water piping. Tests have been conducted by NEETRAC to demonstrate that accelerated deterioration of interconnected steel is not a significant problem. In summary, utilities should carefully consider all aspects of the system performance before installing semiconducting jackets on direct-buried cable. Though the advantage of lower system resistance to remote earth is desirable and immediate, the potential subtle negative effects are longterm and may have an effect on the useful life of the cable. The utility should consider the particular circumstances of the proposed installation conditions and weigh the merits of each cable jacket option. Cable Jacket Marking External marking of jacketed cable is necessary and serves three major purposes. The first is to provide information on the cable’s characteristics. The conductor size, type and thickness of insulation, and voltage rating must be included. The manufacturer’s name and the year of manufacture must also be included. All these markings must be durable and indented into (or embossed onto) the jacket. The second purpose is to make individual cable identification and accounting easier by applying sequential footage markers to the outside of the jacket. These markings should be applied with the general cable information listed above. These markings, along with reel label data, tell the installer how much cable remains on a reel. The sequential footage markings also help identify a particular cable that may be exposed in the midpoint of a multiconductor run. The third important purpose of external markings is to identify JCN cables as high-voltage cables. If unmarked, JCN cables are indistinguishable from jacketed communications cables. This difference must be made clear to personnel of all utilities. Previous efforts have involved the application of three red stripes in the cable surface. Other schemes have used various patterns of raised ribs on the cable surface. To assist in solving this problem, the NESC (ANSI Standard C2) requires that all electric supply cables have a standard lightning bolt symbol included in the external marking. This symbol is illustrated in Figure 2.10. As with all other exterior markings, it must be durable and indented into (or embossed onto) the cable surface.

Printed Data Clear Space





Symbol for Communication Cable
Printed Data Clear Space





Symbol for Supply Cable
H = Height of printed characters; determined by cable manufacturer

FIGURE 2.10: Cable Identification Markings. Source: ANSI/IEEE C2 (NESC).

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Cable Specification and Purchasing
Acquisition of satisfactory cable starts with preparing an adequate specification document that fully describes the cable needed. As the preceding topics in this section have shown, there are many options from which to choose. The specification must describe the following: • The cable that will best fulfill system requirements, • The quality control tests that are expected during and after manufacture, and • The packaging and shipping methods to be used. In short, all items of importance to the purchaser must be described either directly or through reference to other industry-standard specifications. Reference to industry-standard specifications can greatly simplify the specification-writing process for both the purchaser and the supplier. Perhaps the most notable examples of widely accepted U.S. cable specifications are those prepared under the auspices of the ANSI/ICEA. ANSI/ICEA Specification S-94-649 covers cables insulated with thermoplastic, cross-linked, and ethylene propylene rubber. This specification is for shielded cables rated five through 46 kV. Within these specifications, there are references to various detailed specifications, such as National Equipment Manufacturers Association and ASTM specifications. Another major specification that affects rural electric cooperatives is RUS Bulletin 1728F-U1. The RUS U1 specification makes extensive reference to ANSI/ICEA Specification S-94-649-2000. U1 is oriented specifically to UD cables up to 35 kV and optional semiconducting outer jackets. As of the writing of this manual, this RUS Bulletin 1728F-U1 is still pending final approval. Compliance with these commonly accepted electric industry specifications assures the purchaser that the manufacturers will be familiar with the general requirements and should have designs and quality control procedures in place to meet the purchaser’s needs. SAMPLE CABLE SPECIFICATIONS The first step when buying any cable is to determine the specific requirements of the project being considered. These requirements can range from routine cable purchases for use in small-capacity, single-phase extensions to specialized cables for substation feeder exits, underwater installations, or other unusual applications. Appendix E contains sample specifications for primary cable. Appendix E addresses cables with both EPR and TR-XLPE insulation. These specifications incorporate many of the features that have been discussed and recommended in this manual. Appendix E shows features to include in specifications for the purchase of single-conductor, medium-voltage cable suitable for rural systems. These specifications are compatible with, and in some cases exceed, the requirements of pending RUS Bulletin 1728F-U1. Because these are general specifications, they are particularly oriented toward the routine cable purchase. These specifications may not include special features needed in a particular project. Therefore, the engineer must closely review these specifications and change them as needed to meet any unusual requirements of a particular project. Appendix C is a sample specification for secondary single-conductor and triplex cables. Three types of insulation are included: standard crosslinked polyethylene, ruggedized cross-linked polyethylene, and self-sealing insulated cables. Because many secondary cable failures are caused by insulation cuts during installation, these tougher insulations are required for reliability. The use of ruggedized secondary cable is recommended. Self-sealing secondary cables contain a viscous material between the outer layer of conductor strands and the inner surface of the insulation. When the insulation is disrupted, the viscous insulating material flows into the cut and restores the integrity of the insulation. This stops the entrance of moisture into the cable and arrests the progress of the typical secondary cable failure. TYPICAL SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS There are certain areas in which purchasers commonly change the specifications to meet their particular needs. Neutral Size One item that affects both the initial and the operating costs of an underground cable is the concentric neutral conductivity. If the neutral selected

Cable Se l e c t i o n – 7 5

for three-phase installations is too large, both the initial cost and the circulating current losses will be higher. However, on single-phase installations, a larger concentric neutral is needed to carry the neutral return current that may be near the magnitudes of the current in the energized conductor. On single-phase installations, a reduced neutral capacity could produce higher neutral-to-earth voltages and higher losses because of the lower conductivity of the neutral conductor. Conceivably, the reduced-capacity neutral could even be thermally overloaded as the cable approaches normal rated capacity. For these reasons, RUS requires a full-capacity neutral in single-phase installations and allows a one-third (or greater) capacity concentric neutral on three-phase cable installations. This approach ensures that there will be concentric neutral conductivity at least equal to the phase conductor conductivity in both single-phase and threephase installations. The cooperative engineer should consider the typical use of the cable that is being bought when deciding whether to use full-capacity or reduced-capacity neutrals. Length Each purchaser will have different requirements for the length of cable on reels to use on routine installations. Requirements will vary with terrain, the type of equipment used to install cables, and the typical distance between termination points. The cables should be bought in the longest lengths practical for the field crews to use so as to leave less scrap at the reel ends. Constraining factors will be the width and diameter of reels that the cable transport and installation equipment can accommodate. The cooperative engineer must also consider the weight of the full reel when deciding on the standard reel size. As with all other aspects, it is helpful to select the same maximum reel sizes that other cooperatives choose, especially if there is a group purchase arrangement. Doing so makes stocking easier for manufacturers and distributors and consequently reduces the cost for the cooperative. Cold Weather Bending Utilities operating underground systems in cold climates have experienced a variety of flexibility problems with cables caused by the low temperatures. To lessen these problems, the specifier can insert a section requiring a cold bend qualification test. This test will indicate the probability the cable will fail during bending or movement at low temperatures. It is not a measure of cable flexibility. In most cases where the cable operating temperature is always above -17°C (0°F), cable bending problems are not significant. Feeder Cable Shielding Section 4 of this manual shows that high-capacity three-phase cable installations incur much higher losses when high-conductivity concentric neutrals are used. Induced currents that circulate between the neutrals of the three phases cause these losses. Lower conductivity neutral/shield arrangements reduce these losses. Such arrangements not only can reduce the economic loss associated with circulating currents, but also can increase cable ampacity by cutting the amount of heat generated in the neutral/shield. Substation exits or other large feeders generally have better load balance with lower neutral currents. Therefore, reduced concentric neutrals will have adequate thermal capacity, especially if they are supplemented by a separate neutral conductor. Where a high-capacity feeder is being installed, the engineer should give particular attention to the size of the neutral and/or shield specified on the cable. The engineer must also check the magnitude and duration of fault currents on the system when selecting a particular neutral/shield arrangement. Fault current duration is usually not a problem on 200-amp-class single-phase circuits because full-capacity neutrals are used and circuit reclosing is not a factor. However, the other extreme is substation feeder exit cables where there is a desire to reduce neutral capacity to minimize circulating current losses and increase ampacity. In these locations, the fault currents are higher, overcurrent protective devices operate more slowly, and reclosing is often used. All these elements contribute to higher neutral/shield temperatures under cable fault conditions. The neutral/shield component of underground substation feeder exit cables and express feeders must also carry fault currents for all down-line faults. An additional neutral conductor located in the same

7 6 – Se c t i on 2

trench or conduit with the insulated cables can supplement this capability. The engineer should pay particular attention to this set of conditions when selecting a reduced neutral size. CABLE PURCHASING PRACTICES Vendor Prequalification Because cable is one of the keys to a reliable and cost-effective underground distribution system and some types of cable defects are not obvious at the time of manufacture and will be recognized only years later, all cable needs to be manufactured by reliable producers. It is in the cooperative’s best interest to review the qualifications of vendors and select those that have a proven capability to produce a high-quality insulated conductor. Prequalification of vendors ensures that all parties quoting on a cable order have a proven ability to produce a high-quality cable meeting a particular specification. Prequalification avoids situations in which a vendor with questionable qualifications submits an unrealistically low price. Under these circumstances, the utility is typically required to honor the bid, which may lead to additional long-term cost through premature cable failure. It is only logical that if most of the utility industry is carefully prequalifying vendors, those found unqualified by others will have lower prices and better lead times because of lower demand for their products. This possibility makes it even more important to participate in an effective vendor prequalification program. Group Purchase One way to simultaneously improve cable prices and quality is to engage in group purchasing of cable. This practice has several advantages to both the vendor and the cooperative. Larger quantities (more than 50,000 feet) often lead to better overall quality control. During the initial part of a cable manufacturing run, larger orders mean that the front and tail ends of a particular run can be scrapped. This additional cost for nonqualifying material is then spread over a larger order, thereby reducing the unit price. Active quality control is an important part of any utility purchasing program. This quality control should include factory visits during major cable purchases to review factory production and testing procedures. To be effective, an individual familiar with cable production and testing methods must be present. Because the expense of this observation is essentially the same for large or small orders, large orders greatly reduce the incremental unit cost for observation. Moreover, with group purchasing, there is a greater chance that a staff engineer from one member of the group will have (or be able to develop) the expertise necessary to effectively perform this function. Group purchasing and larger orders will always lead to a lower unit price. Because all the cable bought under a group plan will be according to a single specification and of the same construction, the manufacturer can achieve economies through the following: • Volume purchases of required material; • Longer, more efficient runs in wire drawing operation; • Longer, more efficient runs in cable extrusion operation; and • Wider distribution of fixed costs associated with a single order. Group purchasing of large cable quantities has a minimum effect on delivery practices. Manufacturers will usually ship parts of the larger order to destinations specified by group members at no extra cost. In some cases, groups have negotiated warehousing arrangements with manufacturers for release of cable on a designated schedule throughout a year. This arrangement reduces the cash flow burden on the cooperative. It also gives the manufacturer additional flexibility by allowing the major production runs to be scheduled at more convenient times. Another advantage to group purchasing on a standardized specification is the feasibility of having a single distribution point where the group maintains a cable stock. The ability to receive large orders coupled with reduced warehouse space requirements at the individual group members’ sites may make this approach reasonable in some cases. This option is particularly attractive when group purchase and stocking of other utility materials is also practiced.

Cable Se l e c t i o n – 7 7

Cable Acceptance
After a cooperative has analyzed its cable needs, written a comprehensive specification, and followed good purchasing procedures, one critical step remains before installation can begin. This step is the acceptance and inspection of the cable delivered by the manufacturer. Cable acceptance involves several simple and inexpensive steps that can yield big dividends. The cooperative engineer must follow these steps to make sure that a quality product is delivered to installation crews. STEP 1. VISUALLY INSPECT FOR SHIPMENT DAMAGE Visually inspect cable reels for any damage that may have occurred in transit. Signs of possible damage include impressions or nicks on the outside layer of cable or the reel lagging. If possible, this inspection should take place while reels are still on the delivery vehicle. STEP 2. CHECK TAGS Visually check each reel to determine that it has proper tags and labels as described in the specifications. Make sure that information on the reel tags agrees with purchase-order information. For example, be sure that wire size, insulation thickness, neutral configuration, and jacket description all conform to the specifications and purchase order. Cable length should fall within the bounds described by the purchase order. If cable was ordered cut to specific lengths, the engineer should check the tag and sequential jacket markings (if available) to be sure that enough length is available for the required run. STEP 3. CHECK DIMENSIONAL TOLERANCE Make a simple measurement of basic cable dimensions on one reel of each cable size in a shipment to confirm that labeling is correct. Measure these dimensions: • Conductor size and stranding, • Insulation thickness, • Concentric neutral wire size and number of strands, and • Jacket thickness.
Section 11, Cable Testing, gives further information on allowable dimensional tolerances.

STEP 4. CONDUCT CABLE ACCEPTANCE TESTING Once on each order or once for each 50,000 feet of cable, the cooperative should conduct a complete set of dimensional and electrical performance tests on the cable to make sure it complies with the purchase specifications and referenced industry standards. These tests include the following: • • • • Conductor shield resistivity test; Insulation shield resistivity test; Dimensional analysis of all components; Microscopic examination for voids, contaminants, and shield interface protrusions; and • Insulation shield stripping test. An outside laboratory will need to help with these tests. Section 11 gives additional information on these tests.

Summary and Recommendations

Cable systems are one of the most important parts of any underground system. Special care must be used in selecting both primary and secondary cables. Some important points follow: 1. JCN cable must be used for most underground installations. Insulating jackets are preferred. 2. Aluminum central conductors are the economical choice for most underground situations. 3. Solid conductors up to No. 2/0 AWG may be used to eliminate longitudinal moisture migration.

4. All stranded conductors should have strand filling in interstices to eliminate longitudinal moisture migration. 5. Modern TR-XLPE or EPR cables offer reliability superior to that of earlier cables of HMWPE or XLPE. 6. Vendor quality control and manufacturing cleanliness are essential to the production of reliable cable. 7. In heavily loaded three-phase circuits, reduced neutrals will cut losses caused by circulating neutral currents. Reduced neutrals

7 8 – Se c t i on 2

will also increase circuit ampacity, particularly where phases are separated. 8. A comprehensive cable specification must be used and received materials inspected for compliance. 9. Initial cost, cost of dielectric losses, and cable life expectancy must be evaluated when making purchasing decisions.

Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 7 9

In This Section: General Sectionalizing Philosophy

Underground System Sectionalizing

General Sectionalizing Philosophy Overcurrent Protection of Cable System Effect of Inrush Current on Sectionalizing Devices

Selection of Underground Sectionalizing Equipment Faulted Circuit Indicators Summary and Recommendations

The final design and continuous reliable performance of an electrical distribution system depend on many engineering elements. Protective device coordination, overcurrent protection, overvoltage protection, voltage regulation, and service continuity are just a few of the elements that are incorporated. This section addresses the coordination of overcurrent protective devices in underground distribution systems and the coordination of these protective devices with protective devices on interconnected overhead portions of the system. This section is not intended to provide a comprehensive procedure for planning and operating a protection program. Furthermore, the procedure for calculating system fault current is beyond the scope of this section. An excellent reference for designing protection systems and calculating faults is Electrical Distribution System Protection by Cooper Power Systems (1990). Many excellent computer programs are also available for fault current calculation. PURPOSE OF SECTIONALIZING Limit Magnitude of Damage and Injury Short-circuit currents subject a system to both mechanical and thermal stress. Mechanical stress begins at the same time as the initiation of the

fault current and is at its maximum level during the first few cycles when the asymmetrical fault is at a maximum. The ability of system components to withstand mechanical stress is mainly a function of design. Where the maximum available fault exceeds the withstand capability of the system component, the only solutions are the following: • Replace the component with a heavier duty unit, • Modify the circuit configuration to reduce the maximum available fault, or • Use current-limiting protective devices to reduce the let-through current. Thermal stress is a function of the energy released in a system component during a fault that results in rapid heat buildup. The magnitude of energy involved is proportional to current squared multiplied by time (I2t). The traditional approach to reducing thermal damage is to reduce the amount of time a fault is allowed to exist through the careful selection of protective devices and device settings. Where maximum fault levels are so high that the operating time of the protective device must be reduced to an

8 0 – Se c t i on 3

coordinated properly, the fault location should be between Optimize reliability by the device that has operated sizing equipment for and the next load-side device. If the maximum number of maximum faults and protective devices that can Contain Fault Damage using enough feasibly be installed are used, One objective of protective protective devices. the length of line between deequipment is to limit damage vices will be relatively short. at the actual fault site. It is This design approach will reoften impossible or impractical strict the amount of line that to completely eliminate its ocmust be searched for a fault. Thoughtful placecurrence. Through the use of protective devices, ment of devices will also help locate faults. For fault current magnitude and fault duration are example, consider a point at which three taps reduced. This reduces, but may not eliminate, branch off a circuit. If a fuse were placed in the damage to the rest of the system from throughmain circuit just before the taps branch off, opfault currents. Thus, most damage is contained eration of the fuse would show that a fault had within the actual location of the fault. occurred in one of the three taps but it would not show which specific tap. However, if a fuse Maximize System Reliability were placed at the beginning of each of the and Power Quality three branches, operation of one of the fuses Adherence to the following guidelines will maxiwould show which of the three taps contained mize system reliability. the fault. Installing the additional fuses in this situation would also improve consumer reliabil• Purchase system components that will withity by reducing the number of consumers interstand maximum calculated through-fault rupted by a fault. currents. Of course, there are practical limitations on • Locate and size protective devices so the the number and location of devices that can be smallest possible portion of the system is deplaced on a circuit. The judicious use of fault inenergized for a permanent fault. dicators between protective devices will help • Size protective devices so they do not permapinpoint a fault location. The application of fault nently open for temporary faults. This indicators is presented later in this section. Fault guideline applies mainly to overhead portions indicators are especially useful where a circuit of a system, as faults on underground systems may sometimes be backfed. In this situation, are usually permanent. protective devices may not coordinate properly and more Additional reliability may be than one device may operate achieved for critical loads by Wise placement of during a fault. Wisely placed use of an automatic transfer fault indicators would be espeswitching arrangement. These protective devices cially useful to narrow down arrangements are expensive and indicators will aid the fault location. and require two or more independent sources of power. in locating faults and OVERVIEW OF FAULTS minimizing outage Aid in Determining The IEEE Standard Dictionary size and duration. Fault Location of Electrical and Electronics Terms (2000) lists several Proper coordination and placedifferent definitions of the ment of protective devices will word fault. The first two help system operators deterdefinitions listed are relevant here: mine a fault location. If protective devices are impracticably short interval, then current-limiting devices can be used to reduce the fault current and the duration.

causing damage within a fraction of a second.” All faults within these two definitions fall within one of two major categories: an open circuit or a short circuit. normally available protective sectionalizing devices used on electrical distribution systems do not typically detect open circuits. walking on cable in a trench. In addition. Although the intent of this section is to focus on the protection of underground systems. between two points of a different potential.Underground System Section al iz i n g – 8 1 3 • “A wire or cable fault is a partial or total local failure in the insulation or continuity of a conductor. the word fault is associated with its short-circuit definition only. Some of the more common causes are: • • • • • Lightning. Squirrels or large birds. The IEEE dictionary defines a short circuit as “an abnormal connection (including an arc) of relatively low impedance. For a comparison of the sectionalizing of overhead and underground systems. and even fatalities. they are outside the scope of this section. or an intermittent connection. or an element to fail to perform in a required manner. excessive pulling force during installation. Causes of Faults Causes of common mechanical failures of underground cables are dig-ins. Extreme weather conditions. • Faults typically lead to current levels that exceed the thermal rating of conductor and other system components. the protective devices often protect mixed line sections.” • “A component fault is the physical condition that causes a device. the word fault will be used to mean short circuit. and is used interchangeably for short circuit. a component. causing damage. Throughout the rest of this section. on the load side of underground lines. Tree limbs or trees falling on the lines. Also. • The abnormal low-impedance path can include nonutility property or human beings. The voltage between the generation source and the fault decreases proportionally to the inverse of the line impedance. whether made accidentally or intentionally. . driving vehicles over laid cable. In these cases. This increased voltage on the unfaulted phases stresses the insulation and can lead to failure. This last cause includes sharp bending of cable. it is useful to examine the many causes of faults on overhead distribution lines. rodent damage. there is a note that the term fault or short-circuit fault is used to describe a short circuit. a broken wire. Open circuits typically do not lead to damage to the electrical system. Failure of splices and elbows is also either electrical or mechanical failure. and improper handling and installation. Although protective relays that detect open circuits to some degree are available (and others are currently being developed). Principal causes of electrical faults to underground systems include lightning. injury. Description of Faults Some of the phenomena associated with a fault are listed below. insulation treeing. overhead lines in many instances are connected either on the source side or. and thermal insulation failure caused by overloading. less frequently. the phase-to-neutral voltage on the two unfaulted phases can sometimes increase to a level that can approach the normal phase-to-phase voltage. placing or leaving rocks in a position to cause future cable damage. a short circuit. • Voltage at the fault and beyond decreases significantly. • Very little current flows past a fault point. Frequently. An open circuit is any circuit in which the normal continuity of the circuit is interrupted. during single-phase faults on three-phase circuits. leading to loss of service to loads beyond the fault. and allowing nails in reels to damage cable. depending on the cause. and Vehicular damage. In addition.” Within the same definition. for example. underground devices on systems served by overhead feeders must coordinate with those devices protecting the overhead portions of the system.

then the initial fault current will be highly asymmetrical. the greater the asymmetry of the initial fault current is.2 shows the X/R ratio for a single-phase fault. Immediately after the fault initiation. The other consideration that affects the degree of asymmetry of a fault current is the reactance/resistance (X/R) ratio of the equivalent impedance circuit at the fault location. as shown in Figure 3. A high X/R ratio means the inductance of the circuit is greater than the resistance. . all other conditions being constant. If the fault is initiated near a voltage zero. The first is the time within a cycle that the short circuit occurs. Using a standard symmetrical component notation. the degree of current asymmetry decreases accordingly. Figure 3. the current is symmetrical before the fault initiation.2 shows a typical current curve immediately before and after a fault initiation.1. the current is asymmetrical for approximately the first three cycles before returning to a symmetrical waveform.1: Symmetrical Current. where: X1 = Positive sequence reactance R1 = Positive sequence resistance Total Asymmetrical Current DC Component AD Component Equation 3. Equation 3. The degree of asymmetry in the current curve immediately after the initiation of a fault depends on two considerations. Such current symmetry would typically be found in a system under normal operating conditions.1 shows the X/R ratio for a three-phase fault. Equation 3. During an asymmetrical current. then the resulting fault current will be totally symmetrical.2 Single-Phase Fault X Ratio = [(2 × X1) + X0] ÷ [(2 × R1) + R0] R where: X1 R1 X0 R0 = = = = Positive sequence reactance Positive sequence resistance Zero sequence reactance Zero sequence resistance FIGURE 3. If the fault is initiated during a voltage peak. The positive sequence impedance data (X1 and R1) and zero sequence impedance data (X0 and R0) should be available from a system fault study. As the curve shows. A symmetrical current is symmetrical about the zero current line.1 Three-Phase Fault X Ratio = X1 ÷ R1 R FIGURE 3.2: Asymmetrical Short-Circuit Current. the current wave is not symmetrical about the zero current line and can be completely above or below the zero line. The higher the X/R ratio is.8 2 – Se c t i on 3 3 Symmetrical Versus Asymmetrical Faults The terms symmetrical currents and asymmetrical currents refer to the symmetry of the peaks of the current waves about the zero current line. As the point on the voltage curve moves from the voltage zero point to the maximum voltage point. Equation 3.

5 2.504 amperes is less than the asymmetrical interrupting rating of 12.5 3.0 6. the device is acceptable. breakers. Typical protective devices such as fuses. and • An X/R ratio less than or equal to the rating of the device.042 1. The multiplying factor Mrms is 1.0. this value is usually fairly conservative.0 100.000 amperes.0 1.189 1.253 1.305 1.0 40. therefore. they will have either a maximum asymmetrical current interrupting capability or a maximum .697 symmetrical current interrupting rating and a corresponding maximum X/R ratio for the circuit in question.078 1.522 1.0 4. A circuit with a high X/R ratio (one that is highly inductive) will take much longer to decay.000 in this location is less than the interrupting rating of 8.000 amperes.646 1.0 “Maximum RMS” Factor for 1/2 Cycle.015 1. EXAMPLE 3. In addition.600 amperes. or 11. The calculated maximum symmetrical fault on a system is 8.383 1.0 2. most distribution system X/R ratios would be expected to be less than the rating of this device and fall within its capabilities. In other words. switches and sectionalizers will have a close-and-latch rating expressed as amperes symmetrical with a maximum X/R ratio.0 20. Table 3. Where an X/R ratio is used to show the maximum asymmetrical interrupting rating of a device.000 amperes. * Multiply per-phase symmetrical rms short-circuit current by Mrms to obtain momentary per-phase asymmetrical rms fault current.116 1.438 1.000 amperes. The asymmetrical rating is based on the rms (root mean square) value of the maximum asymmetrical fault during the first half cycle of fault current.0 15.504 amperes.002 1. The X/R ratio at this location is 10 and the fuse being considered for this location has a symmetrical interrupting rating of 8. A circuit that has a low X/R ratio (one that is mostly resistive) will decay very quickly. The X/R rating shows that the device is able to successfully interrupt or close into the maximum asymmetrical fault current expected for a system with the following: • A maximum available fault current less than or equal to the symmetrical current rating of the device. The rate at which a fault current decays from its asymmetrical waveform to an essentially symmetrical waveform also depends on the X/R ratio. Likewise.0 5.0 10.1: Device Rated in Maximum Asymmetrical Current Capacity. Mrms* 1. although some fuses may be rated for maximum asymmetrical fault-interrupting capability.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 8 3 3 TABLE 3.569 1.1: Multiplying Factors to Determine Asymmetrical Fault Currents Where Symmetrical Fault Currents Are Known.1 should be useful where devices are rated in asymmetrical currents or where devices are rated in maximum X/R ratios and the actual X/R ratio exceeds the rated value. The maximum asymmetrical fault for this location is 1.0 8.438 × 8. and the maximum asymmetrical fault of 11. X/R Ratio 1. The maximum symmetrical fault of 8. and reclosers are rated in maximum symmetrical fault-interrupting capability.600 amperes and an asymmetrical interrupting rating of 12.438 for an X/R ratio of 10.

The maximum connected substation transfault current is also the current formers.438) + 1. Therefore.522 – 1.2. there would have been no need to calculate the respective asymmetrical fault current. In this application.500 should be coordinated under normal system amperes symmetrical and 3. This must be done beThe maximum available fault current is used to cause phase-to-ground faults typically exceed determine if the interrupting capacity of a device three-phase faults in and near delta-to-wyeis adequate. The term minimum available fault current does • Substation transformers and buses are internot accurately describe the desired value. Maximum faults phase faults. faults and single-phase-toto-ground faults than for threeground faults. For example. the circuit. In other words. the location being considered has a maximum available symmetrical fault current of 2.4716 (15 – 10) emergency conditions. • When considering the coordination of devices.8 4 – Se c t i on 3 3 EXAMPLE 3.922 amperes asymmetrical are less than the device configuration. if a broken conductor .500 amperes yields a maximum asymmetrical fault current for the circuit of 3. will be within acceptable limits. The system engineer should take some precautions when calculating maximum faults: • Do not calculate maximum faults for system configurations that cannot actually exist Equation 3.569 times the maximum symmetrical fault current of 2.922. Furthermore. • When determining the interrupting capability Mrms for X/R of 12 = of devices. • Calculate both maximum three-phase and Maximum Available Fault phase-to-ground faults.569.500 amperes with an X/R ratio of 20. The connected to produce the maximum available actual minimum fault current on any circuit apfault.415 amperes. The device being considered is a recloser with a maximum interrupting rating of 3. Typical conditions are as follows: taps for which only phase-to-ground faults should be used when devices are coordinated. A common example is two substation proaches zero.438 = 1.000 amperes symmetrical equals an asymmetrinormal conditions.3 because of operating restrictions. The Mrms factor of 1. In this case. interpolation can be used to calculate an Mrms factor. If the circuit’s X/R ratio had been dinate devices under emergency conditions 12 or less. The Mrms factor for the circuit X/R ratio of 20 is 1. whereas three-phase magnitude at which the coorfaults typically exceed phaseMaximum available dination of devices is checked to-ground faults further out on fault current should for adequate time clearance. some be used to check Maximum faults should be caldevices have different operatculated for both three-phase ing characteristics for phaseinterrupting ratings. supplier. although not exact. devices cal interrupting rating of 4. Another reason are calculated using those confor calculating both types of ditions that will lead to the maximum available faults is that most systems have single-phase faults. the power supplier is calculate phase-to-phase-to-ground faults.1 does not list an X/R ratio of 12. use the maximum expected fault. • The maximum fault is available from the power When coordinating devices on vee-phase lines. It may not be possible to coorratings. Device Rated for Maximum Circuit X/R Ratio. transformers operating in parallel if such an arrangement is possible and usual. (such as when a circuit is backfed from a nearby substation). which.4716 × 3. Although Table 3. A bolted fault has zero fault resistance (or reactance).000 amperes symmetrical and a maximum circuit X/R ratio of 12. operating its system with maximum generation and with its transmission system interconMinimum Available Fault nected to result in a maximum available fault. • A bolted fault (both three-phase and phase-toground) is applied at each location to be evaluated. The maximum fault conditions of 2. calculate the maximum fault under The Mrms value of 1. (12 – 10) even if it would occur only under unusual or × (1. the recloser is acceptable.

the engioccur on the overhead portion of the system. ence on the difference between the maximum Of course. duced protection of the underThese values are for faults that ground line section. with 10 ohms giving more conservative results. which is mainly controlled by the amount of generation online and the transmission system and bus configuration. The results showed with in-line reclosers on the source side and the that the median level of fault load side of the fuse might be resistance was 25 ohms and impossible.000-kVA porary faults on the load-side as most faults are base capacity operated in the overhead line. 15-kV distribution class. A commonly used value ground line section is more advantage on a totally of fault resistance for overhead desirable than frequent operacircuits is 40 ohms. For neer could design the system with a spare cable faults on underground systems with concentric (or cables). a valTo compensate for the repermanent. Where circuits are composed of interconnected sections of underground and overhead. or airport glide path). any location where a transition from overhead to underground cable takes place or in a substation or step-down transformer where the underground circuit originates (see Figure 3. circuit. This variability should always be considered when determining the system standard protection parameters. neutrals or metallic shields. there are exceptions to this recomand minimum faults. The variables that typically affect the calculated minimum fault are the following: • Available fault current from the source utility or transmission system. install the primary cable in conduit. It is also important to note that site conditions vary widely between utilities and within each distribution system. causing a fault that approaches zero amperes. and • The fault resistance. This reduces the time needed to restore mend a value of zero to 10 ohms to calculate minservice in case of a failed cable. rethe average level was 35 duced protection of the underReclosing is not an ohms. • The configuration of the distribution system and substation buses. For substation of the fuse caused by temunderground system.3). they are best (fault resistance) usually has the greatest influprotected by nonreclosing devices such as fuses. and other system components. However. Doing so will minimize restoration time and help distinguish between overhead and underAlthough the effects of the first two variables ground faults. which is the resistance between the faulted conductor and the return path that must be added to the known impedances of the source. that is. DESIRABLE LOCATIONS FOR SECTIONALIZING DEVICES Beginning of UD Cable It is normally desirable to place sectionalizing devices at the beginning of underground cables. tions of greater than 5.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 8 5 3 falls on dry sand or a dead. should not be discounted. highway. mendation. the concept of a minimum fault current actually involves calculating the minimum fault current that can be expected during most of the faults on a system. transmission apparent fault resistances versus a percentage of line. some parties recomor both. Since faults on underminimum fault configuration. . bone-dry tree. In this case. Coordinating a fuse faults at that resistance level. The third variable ground lines are usually permanent. it may be necessary to make two sets of fault calculations using the underground fault resistance in one run and the overhead fault resistance in the other run. such as where a circuit is mostly Many field measurements made on utility sysoverhead with a short section of underground tems in the 1930s were used to develop a plot of (for instance. under a river. imum faults. ue of 30 ohms is often used. the effective fault resistance approaches infinity. transformers. they frequently either Faults on overhead lines are usually temporary do not vary significantly from the maximum and are best protected by reclosing devices such fault configuration or are not available in the as breakers or reclosers.

– Normally Closed N.C.O.3: Sample Distribution Circuit with Typical Locations of Sectionalizing Devices Shown. Legend Overhead Line N. To Next Substation N.O.O.C. N.C. .2 kV GRD WYE 10 miles from Main Substation 5 miles from Main Substation N. N.C. 115 kV–12. – Normally Open FIGURE 3.5/7. Underground Line Breaker or Recloser Fuse Distribution Transformer Switch N.O. N.O.O.8 6 – Se c t i on 3 3 Main Substation N. N.

Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 8 7 3 Another solution is to establish an alternate circuit route to the area that would allow the underground section to be de-energized for repair or maintenance without extended loss of service. rather than all. single-shot sectionalizers. and other singleoperation devices. Underground lines are protected by fuses. it is desirable to install sectionalizing devices at the beginning of taps off a main feeder or sub-feeder. 2. The fault impedance would be quite high and may require a significant time interval to establish an arc after being extinguished. overhead faults are usually temporary. Alternatively. then any temporary faults would cause a blown fuse and an unnecessary outage and service call. thereby substantially prolonging the duration of faults on the cable system and making cable damage much more extensive. End of Underground Cable Where Continued as Overhead The general use of underground cable followed by a load-side overhead line. Transformers Pad-mounted transformers must be fused to protect the system from transformer failures and secondary faults. Taps Off Main Feeders and Sub-Feeders Typically. 4. This is also a good location because devices can be readily installed in the switching cabinet. The cumulative fault duration could lead to thermal damage of the cable and any fuse protecting the cable. of the taps. A recloser or breaker installed at the beginning of the underground line to coordinate with the load-side recloser or breaker could lead to extensive cable damage during faults internal to the cable system. it may be necessary to install in-line sectionalizing devices at one or more locations between the beginning and end of the feeder. 3. opens up additional sectionalizing difficulties. This is particularly the case where several heavily loaded taps are located along the length of the feeder. This type of fault is typically caused by a concentric neutral that is badly corroded or fault damaged. A summary of the problems associated with this type of arrangement follows. If a recloser or breaker is installed at the beginning of an overhead line that is fed by an underground line. There have also been occurrences of self-clearing cable faults that have allowed reclosing devices to reset between arcing events. It is necessary to keep fuse sizes small enough to limit the energy and duration of any transformer fault that does occur. On the other hand. In-line sectionalizing is also recommended where the feeder is so long that the maximum fault currents at the beginning and . Optimum fault protection of such an arrangement is almost impossible to achieve. 1. the underground line will be subjected to multiple through-faults because of the reclosing action of the recloser or breaker. other than short underground feeder exits at substations. mainly because underground faults are usually permanent and can cause widespread damage to cable insulation if not quickly and permanently interrupted. Using properly installed fault indicators along with solid blade disconnects at each end of the cable will help operating personnel differentiate a cable fault from an overhead fault. the recloser or breaker will lock out after the third or fourth interruption. Overhead lines can also be subjected to faults for longer periods without extensive damage. if the underground line is protected by a fuse. A feeder cable fault near the end of the feeder would interrupt service to only some. The purpose of reclosing is to test for the clearing of temporary faults. or a downstream fuse (or sectionalizer) will operate to isolate the permanent fault. When there is a permanent fault. Such devices will prevent service on the main feeder or sub-feeder from being interrupted if there is a fault on the tap. Other Locations Where long underground feeders exist. Overhead lines are protected by reclosers or breakers that reclose two or three times. Reclosing is often successful in avoiding a sustained outage. Proper transformer fusing reduces the chance of a transformer catastrophically failing.

The heat produced by the arc between the phase conductor and neutral. during a later fault. conductor and insulation shields. Overcurrent Protection of Cable System PHASE CONDUCTOR AND NEUTRAL PROTECTION General Effects of Faults on Cable Damage of underground cable because of fault currents falls into two general categories. causing a fault. the concentric neutral. and the cable jacket (see Figure 3. splices. In severe faults. one of these components may break down as a result of normal voltage stress or normal load current. In this instance. This through-fault current increases the temperature of the phase conductor and concentric neutral or metallic shield. If maximum through-faults fall below the levels shown on the emergency operating temperature rating graphs in Appendix F. If cables that have been subjected to severe through-faults repeatedly Phase Conductor Jacket Concentric Neutral/ Metallic Shield Insulation Shield Insulation Strand Shield Strand Fill Locations Susceptible to Overheating Damage from Fault Currents FIGURE 3. the optimum device at the beginning of the cable might not operate for a fault at the end of the cable. Long-Term Effects Long-term effects of faults on cable include deterioration of insulation. and earth. and cable. a component that was weakened during previous faults will fail because of through-fault currents. Current Paths During a fault.4: Cross Section of Cable Showing Components Subject to Through-Fault Damage. An in-line device should be sized to operate for a lower fault than for the device at the beginning of the cable. Although it may not damage the conductors. Those materials include conductor and insulation shields. the fault current in the concentric neutral or metallic shield may split and flow both toward the source and in the opposite direction from the source until it reaches external grounding connections. or other return path can damage all cables and components near the fault. transformer internal buses. there may be enough thermal damage from through-fault current to cause failure of splices. and fittings because of overheating or mechanical forces from large through-faults. The exact effects on the various components vary. At some point. current will always flow from the source through the phase conductor to the fault location. the fault current flowing through the cable between the source and the fault location. leading to failure at another location. The first involves burning at the fault location. the elevated temperatures generated by the higher I2R losses can damage those cable materials that contact the metallic conductors. The current can then return through several paths with varying percentages of the current flowing in each path. then insulation damage should not occur. cable shield.8 8 – Se c t i on 3 3 end of the cable differ appreciably. Another possibility is that. elbows. The second category of damage is that caused by a through-fault—that is. a metallic duct system. These paths can include the metallic shield. the primary insulation. Poorly made splices and other connections are especially susceptible to thermal damage. however. Short-Term Effects Short-term effects of faults on cable typically involve obvious burn damage around the fault. the potential results are the same. Where jacketed cable is involved.4). a separate ground wire. .

When cable is protected with a fuse TR-XLPE. EPR.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 8 9 3 for commonly used sizes of TR-XLPE or EPR aluminum caUse thermal damage bles.03 seconds) + (2 × 0. with a cable insulation under ideal installation conditions.4 of Apmay have been installed in a manner that rependix F show maximum short-circuit currents sulted in outside mechanical forces continuously for insulated aluminum and copper conductor acting on the cable. There are separate curves for differAlso. and EPR Classes I.07 seconds each. the recloser will opshort-circuit temperature rating. Thermoset (TR-XLPE. For conductor to reach the 130°C limit.20 seconds ture of 250°C. Figures F. and EPR insulations device—such as a recloser—is used. II.03 seconds conservative approach which fully stresses the for each operation and then twice again. if a 70-ampere Type “L” four-shot Figures F. F. and IV insulaor other nonreclosing device. Application of Thermal the total clearing time of the Damage Curve protective devices. Figures F. Figures F. This will refor the size cables being used. Single-phase which has a maximum short-circuit temperature faults through concentric neutral cable will have of 250°C. each of current in the central conductor. caused by a through-fault is If a more conservative approach is desired.4 contain cable damage (2A2C) recloser is used at a maximum fault curtime-current curves on the basis of the cable rent level of 3.) cables with a nominal operating limit (2 × 0.3.1. etc. For the sample 3. the total rated for 105°C is 140°C.) cables is 150°C.07 seconds) of 90°C have a maximum short circuit tempera= 0. example. There are several reasons for considering curves must be developed for the cables in use this more conservative approach. recloser falls well below the for Insulation System damage time of all the conducThe main effect on cable tor sizes shown.000-amcurves when sizing pere short-circuit condition. insulation.000 amperes. The horizontal axis represents short-circlude rock backfill in the trench and residual cuit current and the vertical axis represents time sidewall pressure in conduit sweeps. The emergency heat transfer through the conductor shield and operating (or overload) temperature for XLPE. the temperature rise calculations used as ent conductor sizes. F.4 are the basis for the Appendix F curves consider only based on TR-XLPE or EPR insulation. damage to the conductor shield and main insuthe cables can be sized to protect against exlation from the heating of the outer surface of ceeding their emergency operating temperatures the conductor. etc. The emergency overload temperature mal damage curve. In the process of sizing sectionalinstead of the higher short-circuit temperature izing devices to protect cable. TR-XLPE.1 through F. limitations. and F. When a multiple-operation for Class III XLPE.5 through F. These curves are sult in an insulation temperature higher than calvery conservative. the cable on a system. When using an allowable short-circuit rating. The more conservative approach of limiting fault durations such that conductor temperatures only reach the emergency operating Figure 3.2. all the cable may need to be replaced.5 shows the recloser time-current temperature rating is recommended. curves plotted along with cable-damage curves fail. thermal damage ratings. First. This is a less erate twice with a clearing time of 0. the fuse total clear tions rated for 90°C normal operation is 130°C curve should fall to the left and below the ther(266°F). The appropriate graph should be used heat generated by both the inner central conducto develop applicable thermal damage curves tor and the outer concentric neutral. . Examples of this would incables. they make no allowance for culated by the standard equations.3 and F. clearing time of 0.8 time to which a cable is subjected to a fault show allowable fault current durations for the should fall below the thermal damage curve. the The total time to which the cable will be suballowable temperature for thermoplastic (HMWjected to the maximum fault is as follows: PE.

4 1.0 2.8 .600 3.8 .000 6.000 4.1 .000 2.8 4.01 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1.000 7.000 40.2 .200 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 600 540 480 420 360 300 240 180 2 120 1 .6 Current (Amperes) FIGURE 3.000 20.03 B 6.5 .2 2A & 2B 12 .04 .000 30.09 .000 9.9 .4 .5: Example of 70-Ampere.0 5.4 4.2 3.800 250 4/0 3/0 1/0 350 2/0 500 750 #1 #2 20 1.6 .400 1.000 .7 .000 5. Neutral Protection When a concentric neutral is full size or equivalent to the phase conductor in ampacity or when the concentric neutral is a reduced-size neutral but multiple phases have neutrals operating in parallel.06 .000 8. Type “L” Recloser Curves for Cable Protection.000 10. Where a jacketed reduced concentric neutral.08 . or longitudinally Time (Cycles.6 3.9 0 – Se c t i on 3 3 Aluminum/XLPE/EPR Short-Circuit Temperature Rating 60 50 40 30 3. it is usually not necessary to review the protection of the neutral. 60-Hertz Basis) Time (Seconds) . tape shield.000 50.3 60 54 48 42 36 30 24 18 .000 2.02 Type L Recloser A 1.07 .000 3.05 .

the system engineer should further Heating of the review the effects of a throughI t neutral may be a A= fault on the neutral and the M materials in contact with the limiting factor where concentric neutral or shield.5 and 3. the normal operating temperature of Note 3. Corrugated tape. tape overlap. not overlapped 1.C. and the maximum allowable transient the degree of electrical contact resistance of the overlaps. Where the reduced concentric neutral or Type of Shield (See Notes 1 and 2) shield is jacketed and carries the majority of the return fault current for a phase-to-ground fault. in mils peratures for cables rated five through 69 kV. in circular mils than full size or the of connections in the neutral I = Short-circuit current in shield. in mils Tables 3.5 and 3. In those instances in which a t = Time of short circuit. in amperes cable is jacketed.2: Effective Cross-Sectional Area of Shield. Wires applied either helically. overlapped (See Note 3) 3. copper is by far the most com4bdm 2(100 – L) monly used. see Tables 3. material.27 [π (dis + 50) + B] b required for a given fault time. Equation 3.Underground System Section al iz i n g – 9 1 3 corrugated shield is used. Formula 3 may be temperature of the shield. helically applied overlapped tapes depends also on the shield.6 give the M values for use Note 2. For example: The effective area of a composite shield consisting of a helically applied tape and a wire serving is the sum of the areas calculated values are constants and depend on the shield from formula 2 (or 3) and formula 1.4 shows the maximum allowable trann = Number of serving or braid wires or tapes sient temperatures for shields in contact with L = Overlap of tape. Helically applied tape. percentage various materials.2 shows Note 1. These tables are very used to calculate the effective cross-sectional area of the shield for new cable. the M components. conservative. Engineering Data for Copper and Aluminum thermal damage is that portion between a fault Conductor Electrical Cables.27 nwb Although several other metals are sometimes employed as sheath/shield material (see Tables 100 3. as a braid or nds the formulas and procedures in the following taserving. Table 3. where: A = Metallic shield cross-sectional the neutral is less The through-fault capability area. in mils for various steady-state conductor operating temdm = Mean diameter of shield. As shown by the tables. no allowance is made for heat transAn increase in contact resistance may occur after cable installation during service fer through the jacket or through the insulation exposed to moisture and heat. 2 1.6 parallel to the insulated cables. the current in the concentric neutrals or shields is typically negligible. in mils (usually 375) sheaths/shields.3 may approach infinity where formula 2 would apply. Adapted from concentric neutral or shield that is subject to Okonite Company. in seconds separate ground wire is run M = Constant. the contact resistance semiconducting shield and the main insulation. Table 3. w = Width of tape. The effective area of composite shields is the sum of the effective areas of the in Equation 3.3 shows the approxib = Thickness of tape. in mils Table 3. Under these conditions. ds = Diameter of wires. Meaning of Symbols the corresponding formulas for calculating the A = Effective cross-sectional area of shield effective cross-sectional area of various types of B = L. Equation 3. path should also be examined.5 and 3. The effective area of thin.3. . or longitudinally with corrugations bles and equations should be applied. The only portion of the TABLE 3. Helically applied flat tape. longitudinally applied 1.3 gives the minimum effective cross-sectional area of metallic shield 4. 2.6). in mils mate normal operating temperature of the shield dis = Diameter over semiconducting insulation shield. 1998. and the nearest ground point in a jacketed sysFormula for Calculating A tem.

065 75 0.045 0. The maximum conductor temperature should not exceed the normal temperature rating of the insulation used. PVC.087 90 0.049 0.088 85 0.047 0.091 70 0.060 0. TABLE 3.062 0. Maximum Allowable Shield Transient Temperature. (Thermoplastic Materials = HMWPE. EPR. With a deformation-resistant thermoplastic jacket. Source: Aluminum Electrical Conductor Handbook.097 .9 2 – Se c t i on 3 3 TABLE 3. For example.063 0. 1989.039 0.061 0. at Various Conductor Temperatures. a cable having a cross-linked semiconducting shield under the metallic shield and a cross-linked jacket over the metallic shield will have a maximum allowable shield temperature of 350°C.062 85 0.) Source: Aluminum Electrical Conductor Handbook.087 95 0.040 0. Shield Operating Temperature (T1). °C Shield Material Aluminum Copper 100 0.) Source: Aluminum Electrical Conductor Handbook.096 50 0.071 55 0.041 0. LLDPE. 1989.057 0. Source: Aluminum Electrical Conductor Handbook.070 60 0.061 90 0.068 68 0.043 0. Approximate Shield Operating Temperature. The temperature of the shield is limited by the material in contact with it. °C/°F 350 200 250 Note.073 50 0.074 TABLE 3.063 80 0. Shield or Sheath Temperature °C at Conductor Temperature Rated Voltage (kV) 5 15 25 35 46 69 105 100 100 100 95 95 90 100 95 95 95 90 90 85 95 90 90 90 85 85 80 90 85 85 85 80 80 75 85 80 80 80 75 75 70 80 75 75 75 70 70 65 75 70 70 70 65 65 60 70 65 65 65 60 60 55 65 60 60 60 55 55 50 Note.058 0.042 0. °C. °C Shield Material Aluminum Copper 100 0.063 0.4: Values of T2.048 0.6: Values of M for the Limiting Condition Where T2 = 350°C. Cable Material in Contact With Shield Cross-linked (thermoset) Thermoplastic Deformation-Resistant Thermoplastic T2. it will be 250°C. (Thermosetting Materials = XLPE.059 0.064 0. TABLE 3.066 70 0.093 60 0.060 0. °C.5: Values of M for the Limiting Condition Where T2 = 200°C.089 80 0. 1989.094 55 0. 1989.059 95 0. Shield Operating Temperature (T1).044 0.091 75 0.057 0.046 0.3: Values of T1.092 68 0.

063 350 – 200 M = (0. Determine the size copper wire shield required to carry a fault current of 10.089 where T2 = 350°C Interpolation of these values for M yields M where T2 = 250°C: M= 250 – 200 × (0.3 may determine the number of any other wire size. T2 = 250°C STEP 3. Determine the M value for a copper shield with T1 equal to 85°C and T2 equal to 200°C.2 shows that the effective crosssectional area of a wire shield is equal to nds2. T1 = 85°C STEP 2.3: Determine Minimum Shield Size for Known Through-Fault Current.072 STEP 4.4. which in this case is deformation-resistant thermoplastic.758 circular mils.072 STEP 5.167 seconds).8 (Use 14) Similarly. A= 10. . Determine the number and size of the wires necessary to equal or exceed 56. M = 0. From Table 3. The number required for any specific wire size is simply the total cross section calculated in Step 4 divided by the individual wire circular mil area and rounded up to the nearest whole number: Number of 14 AWG wires = 56. M = 0. Determine the maximum allowable shield transient temperature for the cable materials in contact with the shield.758 circular mils 0.000 amperes for 10 cycles for a 15-kV XLPE cable having an XLPE insulation shield and a deformation-resistant thermoplastic overall jacket.3.110 = 13. STEP 1.063) + 0. or the number of wires multiplied by the circular mil area of each wire.167 = 56.063 where T2 = 200°C From Table 3.6. From Table 3.089 – 0.3.5. Table 3.3333) × (0.000 0.758 ÷ 4. Applying Equation 3.026) + 0.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 9 3 3 EXAMPLE 3. Determine the approximate shield operating temperature for 90°C conductor temperature (which is the maximum temperature for normal operation of XLPE-insulated cables). Calculate the required shield cross section for a fault duration of 10 cycles (0.063 M = 0. Equation 3. From Table 3.

The disadvantage of using a full-range. The consequences of a rupture are as follows: • Release of oil and the consequent environmental damage.9 4 – Se c t i on 3 3 inside a three-phase transformer or between the primary phase lead and ground inside a singlephase transformer. Either of these can also be full fuse sizes on the basis of operating experience. which is typically measured in joules. If the system engirupture as a result of since the replaceable element neer encounters such a large internal faults. The magnitude of fault current is highest for a fault between the primary leads Philosophy and Theory of Rupture Prevention The basic philosophy of rupture prevention is to prevent ruptures for any and all fault conditions. and the currentis to insert additional fuses limiting element opens for wherever a conductor size high-level faults. improving protection of the cable as long winding. range. the transformer will need to be disas other coordination criteria can still be met. The more windings between the fault location and the primary side of the transformer. The rupture can result from the energy released within the tank and the resulting pressure. change occurs. The energy. size cable. the magnitude of this fault depends on the impedance of the windings between the fault location and the primary leads. the obvious solution overloads. This general rule would not be used in the following situations: PROTECTION AGAINST PAD-MOUNTED TRANSFORMER TANK RUPTURE Internal Faults as Cause of Rupture Of the very small percentage of transformer tanks that fail by rupture. is proportional to the magnitude of the fault cur• Where the maximum load expected on the rent squared multiplied by the time duration of cable is much less than the capacity of the the fault in seconds (I2t). it may be necessary to increase the same result. current or where the duration of the cold-load partial-range. current-limiting fuse is that it will operate for Whatever the situation. For these types of devices. most rupture because of internal faults. a com• Where emergency overloads of the cable can mon solution to preventing tank rupture is to be routinely expected. tank to replace the fuse. the fuse or device curve all levels of fault current and is much more exshould be kept below the thermal damage curve pensive to replace than an expulsion fuse. The of the cable in question. Therefore. opens for low-level faults or problem. Standard Practices Most fuses begin to melt at approximately twice their continuous rating and series coil-operated oil circuit reclosers also tend to trip at approximately twice their continuous rating. The next highest fault is when the primary windings short. The lowest magnitude of fault occurs because of a short in the secondary windings. . Because tank rupture cable. Although operating such a current-limitload capability of the fuse is in line with the ing fuse will require opening up the transformer expected overload on the cable. it is typical to match the continuous rating of the recloser or fuse to the continuous rating of the cable. substantially more than the maximum load In addition. This is rarely a problem use of a bayonet fuse in seexcept where a fuse might be ries with an under-oil current protecting several cables or limiting fuse can overcome several sections of decreasingTransformers can many of these disadvantages. the lower the fault current. the fuse characteristics place a partial-range. current-limiting fuse will provide pickup is long. a dry-well canister or clip-mounted. this is not a problem • In the areas where the cold-load pickup is because the tank will have to be opened anyway. the protecting device can be reduced in is usually caused by failure of the transformer size. carded or opened for repairs. For electronically controlled reclosers or relayed circuit breakers. current-limiting fuse under should be reviewed to make sure the overthe oil. the equivalent continuous rating would be about one-half the trip rating.

5 2. pad-mounted transformers have a higher withstand value than overhead transformers because of the superior energy absorption capability of a rectangular tank compared with a cylindrical tank.2 × 105 6. This formula was solved for selected X/R ratios at the transformer rupture levels shown in Table 3. System Voltage 15 kV 25 kV 35 kV Overhead Transformers 1. Practical Prevention/Reduction of Ruptures Pressure-Relief Valves The pressure inside a transformer tank will increase because of extended periods of overload or low-level faults that are not cleared by the protecting fuse.5 5.400 2.0 × 105 1.400 5 4.400 1. a high-level or internal fault builds the pressure too fast for the pressure-relief valve to be effective. these pressures can increase to levels high enough to severely deform the tank and damage bushing seals.7: Approximate Levels of I2t (Amperes2 x Seconds) That May Result in Destructive Transformer Failure for Internal Faults.400 4.300 1.200 20 1.700 1. thus avoiding the development of high internal pressures and tank damage. In particular. There are no standards for the ability of padmounted transformers to withstand internal pressure from a particular level of fault current.8: Approximate Levels of Fault Current Symmetrical (Amperes) That May Result in Destructive Transformer Failure for Internal Faults. However. If unchecked.4 IS = (IA2t) × (18.600 2.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 9 5 3 • Ejection of flaming oil and metal parts into the air surrounding the transformer with possible damage to equipment and surroundings.700 5 2. Equation 3.200 1. With the results presented in Table 3. More important. Secondary Breakers Secondary breakers act no faster than do expulsion fuses. these levels are by no means an authoritative guide.8 show some possible fault levels that can be used as general guidelines for the fault level at which an overhead or pad-mounted transformer will rupture. the pressure-relief valve cannot protect the tank from damage caused by excessive pressure. the maximum current that overhead and pad-mounted transformers can withstand at typical distribution voltage levels and selected X/R ratios was derived and is shown in Table 3.000 1.0 × 105 TABLE 3.8 cycles.0 × 105 3.6 × 104 5.7.800 3.8.500 . However.100 Pad-Mounted Transformers (X/R Ratio) 2.400 10 1.7.600 1. In these cases. Overhead Transformers (X/R Ratio) System Voltage 15 kV 25 kV 35 kV 2. A pressure-relief valve will release these slow buildups of pressure.000 1.900 1.400 3.500 2.7 and 3. Tables 3. Equation 3. Generally.700 1. or the same as a fuse.4 represents an approximate formula for calculating the symmetrical fault current that will result in a known I2t level. and • The possibility of transferring the fault onto the incoming primary lines. the minimum clearing time for a secondary breaker is approximately 0.200 2.75 + 105 cos θ) where: IS = Symmetrical fault current that will result in known I2t level IA = Known I2t level that may result in destructive transformer damage θ = Arctan (X/R) TABLE 3. Consult the manufacturer of the particular brands of transformers in use on a cooperative’s system for their withstand capability.0 × 104 Pad-Mounted Transformers 5.000 10 3.700 20 3.

Three-phase 25-kV transforming of about 10.000 to 50. A common cause of tank rupture is degeneration of oil into combustible gases as the result of a sustained secondary fault that eventually causes an internal expulsion fuse to operate.9 6 – Se c t i on 3 3 most ruptures are caused by internal faults that would not be cleared by secondary breakers. Effect of Inrush Current on Sectionalizing Devices TRANSFORMER MAGNETIZING INRUSH CURRENTS When a transformer is first energized. load current is less than the fuses can protect As with all fuses. If Manufacturers of currentthe maximum I2t let-through limiting fuses have available graphs or tables indicating the maximum I2t current as read from Table 3. Also controlling the size of the magnetizing inrush current is the point on the volt- age curve of the source at the time the transformer is energized. The maximum interrupting rating have an asymmetrical interrupting rating as low varies depending on the manufacturer. If the transformer is energized when the supply voltage is zero. Estimating Magnetizing Inrush Current Level Calculating the maximum available inrush current for a particular transformer is not feasible.000 amperes symmetriers with internal weak-link expulsion fuses may cal current. the maxicontinuous current rating of against tank rupture. of the fuse is 0. a current-limiting fuse capable ternal expulsion fuse with of interrupting maximum fault greater interrupting rating or a currents at all or almost all full-range current-limiting fuse locations should be available. For a very short time after the transformer is first energized. These interrupting ratings vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and should be checked for the particular fuse.500 amperes asymmetrical for the weak-link type of fuse rated 7. rupting the maximum available fault current. an exground systems.2-kV phaseto-ground. Where the maximum available and size of the fuse. the inrush current will be zero. Expulsion Fuses Internal fuses typically have a maximum interrupting rating of 3.8 of a cycle. then an expulsion fuse could prevent tank rupture. Current-Limiting Fuses Even lower interrupting ratings are typical of Current-limiting fuses are nonexpulsion fuses three-phase transformers.4-kV phase-toground typically have a maximum interrupting rating of 2000 amperes asymmetrical for the weak-link type of fuse. If the transformer is energized when the supply voltage is at a maximum level.8 or calculated 2t required from Equation 3. Because this type of failure occurs when an expulsion fuse ignites the gas mixture. . the current flow will be relatively large until the steady-state flux level is reached. the inrush current will be at a maximum value if there is no residual flux within the core. To protect against tank rupture. Current-limiting should be installed in series Be sure that the maximum with the internal weak link. model. where phase-to-phase and generally have a maximum interrupting ratfaults may occur. It is understood be less than the I2t withstand capability of the that the external fuse must be capable of interprotected transformer. the only magnetic field in the transformer is that caused by any residual flux. the maximum total clearing I2t of the fuse must to rupture the transformer. as 600 amperes. the use of current-limiting fuses and pressure-relief valves (to vent gas as it is generated) will help reduce this type of violent failure. On the majority of underfault level exceeds the rating of the fuse.4 is less than the I let-through. The fuse ignites the combustible mixture and a violent tank rupture can result. mum clearing time for faults the largest current-limiting fuse within the interrupting rating available. The size of this magnetizing inrush current depends partially on the residual flux in the core and the impedance of the source. Internal fuses rated 14.

fall below and to the left of the magnetizing inrush point. phase MVA capacity of the transformer or of It is critical at this point to recheck coordinathe transformer bank if three single-phase tion of the new fuse with the source-side detransformers are used.1 second. the base-rated full-load curcreased in size or replaced rent. this coordination is difficult. When a coordination protection scheme is Breakers established. This setting must be above the priate size and relationship to magnetizing current level of the magnetizing inrush current inrush currents. One rule of thumb uses of the pad-mounted trans12 times the transformer baseformer and where coordinarated full-load current for tion with the protective device Undersizing protective transformers greater than 3 at the source prevents use of MVA in size. curve located either above or to the right reducing the effective size of the fuse. If the breaker relay settings are dead feeder is energized. .Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 9 7 3 These calculations require detailed design data Fuses that are not usually available for the transformer The main problem associated with fuses comes in question. Below are some of the sized so the operation curve falls above the magproblems associated with particular protective netizing inrush point. affected by the magnetizing inrush current. If the tripping because size. which is a perspective of the protective device when a time delay curve. The 3-MVA level used in with another fuse of the same this rule of thumb is the threesize but a slower speed. A clear indication of particularly true where these devices protect an improperly set instantaneous level is a breaker loads—such as industrial parks—that may have with a reclosing relay operating once instantaseveral large transformers. For transformers the size fuse that is normally devices can lead to less than or equal to 3 MVA in used for full capacity. All protective devices not cause the fuse to operate the first few times located on the source side of this transformer the transformer is energized. Current-limiting Effects on Devices fuses are generally not affected if they are parThe main problem associated with magnetizing tial-range fuses. particularly where which the inrush current will flow before dying the present load is much less than the capacity out. Most of these sized fuse on a large pad-mounted transformer use 0. the maximum magnetizfuse falls below the magnetizing inrush current is generally ing inrush current point. breakers typically are not devices. This of the magnetizing inrush point. This problem typically results that the magnetizing inrush current falls above from choosing devices with operation curves that the operation curve. Using an undertransformer inrush current levels. This is unit is less than 0.1 second as the maximum duration for is a fairly common practice. There are many rules of thumb for from using an undersized fuse. not only should devices protecting The area of concern for breakers is the instantasingle transformers be reviewed for their approneous setting. but tap fuses or feeder protecbecause the operation time of an instantaneous tive devices also should be investigated. as the magnetizing inrush current may inrush current level. a time-current coordination curve as a single Fuses are particularly troublesome when underpoint on the 0. If this fuse is on a large transformer bank This magnetizing inrush current is shown on on a rural system. the of magnetizing considered to be eight times fuse may have to be either ininrush current. damage can lead to the eventual failure of the fuse for no apparent reason. Full-range current-limiting fuses inrush current is the unnecessary operation of would be affected if undersized to the point protective devices.1-second axis at the appropriate sized. over a should have curves with all points on the period of time the fuse is gradually damaged. However. These transformers neously when a transformer is energized and appear to be one large transformer from the then closing on the second operation. vices.

the loads seen upon re-energizing the circuit are 3. COLD-LOAD PICKUP CURRENTS On a typical distribution system that has been energized long enough that the system has reached a steady-state condition.1 secthe type of load served and ond in operating time must have a current level of the time of year. the sectionalizer sees the high current level as a load-side fault. 30 minutes) and the system is then energized.000 kW in cyclical devices.. all the cyclical loads will be in an energized state or will go to an energized state upon resumption of the source voltage. . In most areas. geographical location of the utility in question. Sectionalizers Sectionalizers can be armed by magnetizing inrush current. The curves should be chosen so they are located either above or to the right of the magnetizing inrush point. which is then interrupted by a source-side recloser. Therefore. of which only half are energized at any one time. The load experienced by a system after the resumption of service following an extended outage period is the cold-load pickup. Appliances such as air conditioners. greater than 0.1 seconds and 5. reclosers with electronic controls that have instantaneous trip or lockout accessories must have the instantaneous current setting above the magnetizing inrush current level. For example. Some of the new sectionalizers are able to differentiate between a magnetizing inrush current and a true fault current.1 second. Caution should be taken when re-energizing a feeder after an extended outage because it may be difficult to distinguish between cold-load pickup and an uncorrected fault.9 8 – Se c t i on 3 3 Reclosers The main problem with reclosers results from the initial fast curves being set below the magnetizing inrush point. Application of Sectionalizing Devices Sizing protective devices or their curves to avoid their operation as the result of magnetizing inrush currents is usually simple. This problem is similar to the one with a breaker in that a recloser will operate on the fast curves where a large transformer is located on the circuit and then close in and stay closed when operating on the time-delay curves. a circuit that has a 2. Any The magnitude of cold-load point on the protective device pickup varies depending on curve that is less than 0. Again. the solution is to simply set the fast curves above the magnetizing inrush point. refrigerators. initiate operation of the applicable device. In this example. not all the load-producing devices will be on at any one time.500 kW. (Note that these values are used as an example and not intended to show normal values on a system. that is. This energized state occurs because the parameters that are used to operate these devices— such as air temperature or water temperature (in the case of a water heater)—exit the acceptable range and.000-kW load on it may have 500 kW in continuous load such as lights and 3. the normal attenuation of the magnetizing current appears to be a recloser operation to the sectionalizer. For example.g.) If this circuit is de-energized for an extended period (e.000 amperes should be Pickup Currents devices to trip. pickup during the spring and fall is less than several large pad-mounted transformers should during the summer or winter because many of be treated as one transformer for those instances the cyclical devices such as heaters or air condiin which circuit protective devices or station tioners do not operate during these periods. In other words. and water heaters normally cycle on and off.000 amperes. a percentage of these devices will be in their off cycles. the cold-load greater than 5. In addition. heating systems. feeder breakers may be used to energize the Cold-load pickup also clearly depends on the group of transformers. therefore. As cautioned earlier.000 amperes simply shows that any Cold-load pickup point on the curve for which can cause protective the operation level is less than Estimating Cold-Load 5. at any instant. a magnetizing inrush point of 0.

In those instances in which the fast curves fall below the cold-load pickup points but the time-delay curves do not. and allowing each section to remain energized for long enough for the load to return to its steady-state level before energizing the next section. a circuit feeding an all-electric housing development will have a higher cold-load pickup than will a feeder into a residential neighborhood where the main heating methods are oil. The three most important variables the operator can expect concerning the amount of cold load to be picked up upon service restoration are: • length of outage. The effects of cold-load inrush on different types of devices are addressed below. of course. the recloser may trip once or twice on the fast curves and then lock in. This design approach reduces the initial inrush upon line energization but does not reduce the 30-minute load requirement of Rule of Thumb 3. the cold-load pickup during the summer is quite significant because of the air-conditioning load. In some instances.1 Where large amounts of resistive heating or air conditioning are in use. Also. it may be acceptable to have an instantaneous pickup that trips once on cold-load pickup. This segmentation is done by opening the feeder that suffered the outage at different points. the cold-load pickup in a system will. where the time-current curves for a device fall below the cold-load inrush points.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 9 9 3 In the Southeast and Southwest. Most cooperatives should have an idea of the cold-load pickup on their systems based on experience. some feeders with large loads using large motors. an outage of less than 15 minutes will not allow enough time for most of the thermostats to call for heating or cooling. electronically controlled reclosers have an accessory that temporarily doubles the amount of current required to trip the recloser. or natural gas. These are rules of thumb and may vary. In those instances where other restraints prevent this choice. In northern states. However. such as irrigation systems or crop-drying systems. and • Three times full load current for 30 seconds. For example. in the case of an instantaneous pickup. vary from one circuit to another depending on the type of load on that circuit. • type of load. Those reclosers with electronic controls may have instantaneous trip devices that should be set above the cold-load pickup current level. This is particularly true for the fast curves on the recloser. Furthermore. the cold-load pickup during the winter is probably the most significant. Rule of Thumb 3. Effects on Devices In general. it is desirable to choose devices or particular curves for those devices so the curves fall above or to the right of the coldload inrush points. Older. In general. propane. it may be that a cold-load pickup will trip the breaker once on instantaneous trip with the breaker then reclose and provide service from that point on. The practice of putting a time-delay relay on compressor start after an outage is becoming fairly common. to increase the pickup level. the cold-load pickup may be estimated as the following: • Two times full load current for 30 minutes. The solution here is to simply increase the pickup level of the time-delay curve on the breaker or. and • weather conditions.1. the protective devices will operate for cold-load pickup. Reclosers Reclosers are similar to breakers in that they will trip if the cold-load pickup points on the timecurrent curves are above the recloser curves. may have lesser values of cold-load pickup because these systems may have to be manually restarted. the cold-load pickup during the winter also depends on the percentage of electric as compared with nonelectric heating systems. . Unless the outage is at a time of extreme temperature. it may be necessary to segment the system to pick up load after an extended outage. Breakers The breaker may operate if the cold-load pickup is large enough. picking up a section at a time starting at the end of the feeder nearest the source. Where an instantaneous relay is associated with the breaker.

the cold-load pickup current will appear as a fault to the sectionalizer. the cold-load pickup current will be insufficient to cause immediate operation of the fuse. When larger fuses do not coordinate with source-side devices and cold-load pickup is not expected to occur very frequently. the slower speed fuse will generally not work. Moreover. Sectionalizers The cold-load pickup current may be sufficient to trigger the sectionalizer. Require little maintenance. negative sequence. because of the long duration of cold-load pickup currents. the device curves should be set above or to the right of the cold-load pickup points on the time-current curves. the pickup level for instantaneous relays or accessories should be set above the highest coldload pickup current level. In many instances. However. at best. the sectionalizer may not even note any counts. Selection of Underground Sectionalizing Equipment REVIEW OF OVERCURRENT PROTECTION METHODS Fuses The main advantages of fuses are that they are: • • • • Inexpensive. especially with expulsion fuses. additional time and current adjustments to the curve. Any standard curve can be used for the cold-load pickup curve. it is very important that all cooperative personnel are aware of that possibility. Other features that may be available are a time delay after which the curve returns to the normal curve. and Are easy to replace. and cold-load pickup curves for phase. However. a current-limiting fuse is the only readily available device that effectively limits fault current and. Fuses If the cold-load pickup is sufficiently large. the time-current curve of the fuse can slightly overlap the cold-load pickup points. ground. sectionalizers also require a sharp reduction in current following the actuating current to register as an operation of the source-side protective device. Sectionalizers also have a reset time. • Fuses do not have any reclosing capability. In some instances in which other criteria prevent increasing the pickup level or curves. In addition. In most instances. . In those instances. thus.1 0 0 – Se c t io n 3 3 Newer electronic controls have a variety of cold-load pickup adjustments. cause one count on the sectionalizer. Application of Sectionalizing Devices Where possible. cold-load pickup current will. Subsequent cold-load pickups will further damage the fuse until it eventually blows either during a future cold-load pickup or sometimes simply during times of high load level. In other words. along with any trip level. For those sectionalizers that are set for two or more operations before tripping. reduces the destructive failure of transformers and capacitors. interrupting service to all consumers beyond the fuse. • Fuses have no ability to sense low-level ground faults. • The total clear curves and minimum melt curves overlap at high fault current levels for fuses with current ratings that are close to each other. • Fuses cause “single-phasing” on three-phase circuits. • Expulsion fuses produce hot gases and by-products. but will damage the fuse. and other types of system conditions. • The number of sizes and types is limited. The disadvantages of fuses are as follows. Compact. in those instances in which the current decreases slowly. cold-load pickup typically will not be a problem. it will blow the fuse. it may be acceptable for reclosers and breakers to trip on their instantaneous or fast curves before locking in permanently. • The maximum current-interrupting rating is limited. The solution is to increase the size of the fuse or to replace the fuse with a fuse of the same size but with a slower operating curve.

For this reason. although it is possible to install breakers on platforms on overhead portions of the system or in metal or fiberglass enclosures. particularly on heavily loaded feeders. • Where the maximum fault current exceeds instantaneous relays are available to provide the fault-interrupting capability of commonly high-speed operation during high fault levels. • The types of relays that may be used to control the breakers are available in a wide variety of characteristics. because faults on these functions include over/ this type of system tend to be permanent. may be needed to coordinate with substation The disadvantages of breakers are: breakers or reclosers. stream breakers or reclosers. • The relays (typically inverse overcurrents on In general. • Their relays must be calibrated initially and periodically. Other features may include fault beneficial when the maximum fault level is location. . and • Breakers can be purchased with maximum • Where the maximum load current exceeds interrupting capability that exceeds that availcurrent ratings of expulsion fuses (typically able in most reclosers. The inability of fuses to electronic relays provide alsystem. a breaker or recloser rather than fuses trip protection. • They require much more space than fuses do. and ing fuses on pad-mounted transformers is very sync check. directional power and/or current. reclose is not a limitation on most any known relay function underground circuits and within one relay. • Breakers are rated for more operations Another shortcoming of fuses is that their between maintenance than are reclosers. • They require an outside power source (typically a battery). sensiclosing on this type of system simply increases tive earth. negative sequence. Proformer for internal faults. • Breakers interrupt all three phases curves do not always coordinate well with upsimultaneously. enough to cause destructive failure of the transevent recording. the main applia distribution circuit) may be cation for fuses is on radial varied over a wide range of taps that do not require simultime dial settings and pickup Fuses are the most taneous three-phase protection levels to accommodate most frequently used and that are not subject to fresystem conditions and to allow quent temporary faults. many of the cuits. Fuses changes as the load increases protective device on particularly lend themselves to over time. Using current-limitimpedance. the amount of fault damage. and communications. Circuit Breakers Most circuit breakers on underground distribution systems are found in substations. The primary condigrammable logic functions can be used to detions that limit the use of expulsion fuses at fine the sequence of responses to almost any certain locations are the following: type of event.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 1 0 1 3 • Fuses cannot be controlled or monitored by Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems. a wide variety of metering functions. over/under frequency. Reunder voltage. at • Breakers are available with ground certain locations. Some of the advantages of breakers follow. • Reclosing relays are available where breakers protect portions of overhead line. 200 amperes). In addition to overan underground protecting underground circurrent functions. reclosing. • They require separate relays that add to the total expense. available expulsion fuses. Some of transformers.

The main advantage of a recloser tionalizer to work properly. for a permanent underground system. The sectionalizer has. Reclosers Where three-phase or sinReclosers are available in both High load current. • They are significantly more expensive than other available devices. • Three-phase protection is desired. • The load current exceeds the rating of A problem inherent in many of the older sectypical fuses. Three-phase tionalizer senses a fault condition. and locks out just before the changeable in pickup level and operating recloser goes through its final close operation. The interruptare currently available in both ing rating of most single-phase reclosers is overhead versions and those that can be intypically less than or equal to that of most distristalled in pad-mounted enclosures. The station and on main three-phase lines where the total number of operations for the recloser defollowing apply: pends on whether the majority of the system is overhead or underground. on the same order of magniThe properly coordinated sectude as the maximum load current. fuses. however. The single-phase seHigh fault current. on overhead than on underSeveral types of sectionalizers ground systems. advantage on circuits with fault is cleared or it trips for a large load where the minimum maximum number of times phase-to-ground fault may be (usually four) and locks out. curves. as indicated earone less operation than its companion recloser lier. gle-phase reclosers are used single-phase and three-phase on underground circuits.1 0 2 – Se c t io n 3 3 • They are harder to operate and maintain than reclosers and. Sectionalizers are fault-sensing unit. although they are seen more frequently Sectionalizers protection. Three-phase reclosers and breakers are used for the following: Three-phase protection. • Ground fault protection is desired. In other words. particularly. Reclosers are typically sible safety problems. it is desirbreakers and come with all controls included. tionalizers is that they tend to count magnetizing . Reclosers are usually less expensive than system. which is an opens. able to have the sectionalizer set for only one The electronic reclosers do require an outside operation to limit the exposure of the underpower source. fault. counts each electronically controlled reclosers are also easily recloser operation. it is versions. and are frequently used on Ground fault distribution lines. it must be set for is that it does reclose. a recloser located beThree-phase reclosers can tween the sectionalizer and be supplied with a groundthe source senses a fault. This is a particular to open and reclose until the interrupting limitations. • It is advantageous to use SCADA for both control and status reporting of reclosers. isolated the fault beThree-phase reclosers with electronic control yond it. The source-side recloser is used as a circuit protective device inside a subset for two or more operations to lock out. although dc ground system to through-fault damage and posversions are available. typically 120 volts ac. thus. and continues not subject to faultadvantage. recloses. simple to disable the reclosing ries-trip versions do not reand feature and have one-shot opquire an outside power source eration of the recloser. For a secbution fuses. this is not considered an advantage on an or breaker. On an underground system. allowing the recloser to successfully reare available with a wide range of SCADA accesclose and continue service to the rest of the sories.

6.or partial-range currentPROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT IN limiting fuses are available for PAD-MOUNTED ENCLOSURES use in these locations. lencer that eliminates or reduces venting when can be used in areas with higher available the fuse operates and also muffles any sounds. fuse in conjunction with an load-interrupting mechanisms expulsion fuse. In addition. The expulsion that provide the dual function fuse will operate for low. In addition. therefore. allowing the voltage to fall to zero. a fuse. are available in partial-range current-limiting fuses combined with integral pad-mounted form. available faults exceed tion between devices is tight. Therefore. high-level faults can lead to cannot allow another level of coordination. One criterion is to check for loss of voltage on the line. a design engineer should never apply an interrupting device in a location where load will exceed its rating. sure. Some of the advantages of sectionalizers are as follows: circuits are readily available. Sectionalizers are also useful where coordinaAt some of a fuse and switch in one moderate-level faults without damaging the device can be purchased. Each incoming/outgoing circuit will pass through a solid bus. Pad-mounted enclomore expensive current-limiting fuse.Underground System Section a l i z i n g – 1 0 3 3 inrush or cold-load pickup currents as faults and. Sectionalizers are available that are capable of distinguishing between faults and inrush currents such as magnetizing or cold load. Extreme care should be taken to avoid opening or closing a switch that is carrying current in excess of the interrupting rating. fault currents than can fuses. the operation of a recloser results in zero current while the recloser is open as opposed to inrush or cold-load pickup for which current drops to a normal level. This fuse is frequently supplied with a si• They do not interrupt faults and. An • They are less expensive than reclosers expulsion fuse is the most commonly available or breakers. This interrupting rating may be equal to or less than the maximum continuous current rating of the switch or combination fuse/switch. as they have no the maximum interrupting capacity of expulsion time-current curve. a switch. can be disastrous. See Figure 3. the disruptive failure of load-side devices such as transformers.) space of a pad-mounted compartment. must be greater exhaust gases. Another method is to require that the load current drop to essentially zero after the high inrush current. Full. Figure Fuses and Switches 3. Another solution for high be purchased with switches fault current level areas is a only or fuses only. Different types of fuses are available. Switches and fuse/switch combinations may be designed for de-energized switching duty only or they may be equipped with an arc suppression device that allows opening and closing the switches under load up to a maximum rated current level.6 shows an assortment of Fuses and switches are comMost protective current-limiting fuses that are bined here because both are used in pad-mounted often found in the same enclodevices. Heavily loaded taps often fuses. type. therefore. or a combination fuse/switch. although enclosures can exception of breakers. Other features are also available in existing and new sectionalizers that reduce nuisance tripping. Both fuses sures with up to four or more incoming/outgoing . (The shortA silencer is a necessity where fault currents are time-current withstand capability of the relatively high in magnitude and the resulting sectionalizer. These sectionalizers use different methods for doing so. lock out unnecessarily. however. if released within the enclosed than the available fault current. Almost any kind of circuit arrangement can be accommodated by a switching enclosure or enclosures. Again. with the switchgear. A true recloser operation de-energizes the line.

these vacuum switches can then be coordinated with source-side and load-side devices such as fuses. and control the timecurrent characteristics of the device. Storedenergy operators generally have better switching ratings.1 0 4 – Se c t io n 3 3 Vacuum switches are also available from some manufacturers. reclosers. These may have current-sensing controls with or without inverse time-current curves. Another advantage is that the continuous rating of the larger modules exceeds that available in current-limiting fuses.000 amperes are available. and other vacuum switches. Hydraulic reclosers with a limited number of curves and current trip levels are available. The various timecurrent curves available with this device can often provide better coordination with adjacent devices than can traditional thermal fuses. The operation of all types of switches can be controlled by several different means: • These switches can be simply opened or closed manually at the switch location by using hot sticks in energized switches. Courtesy of Hi-Tech Electric (T&B). Another type of protective device is the electronic fuse. Faultinterrupting capability varies with the current interrupting level of the hydraulic units and is typically 12. . Vacuum interrupters are typically used for increased fault-interrupting capability and increased service life. which is actually a hybrid device. Continuous current ratings up to 600 amperes and maximum symmetrical current interrupting capability up to 40. the duty cycle of the contacts is greatly increased by the vacuum. as are electronically controlled units with an extensive number of curves and current levels.6: Current Limiting Fuses for Pad-Mounted Switching Cabinets. When equipped with inverse time-current curves. These switches have contacts in a vacuum bottle which increases the interrupting capacity of the switch to handle higher ranges of fault current. 2007. may be available in the future. An interrupting module interrupts the fault under the control of the control module. with the current-limiting fuse limiting the length and magnitude of the fault and consequently limiting the total magnitude of energy expended at the fault. but these have essentially been replaced by vacuum switches. This sectionalizer is FIGURE 3. This device is available in a range of pickup levels and time-current curves. In addition. Sectionalizers At least one manufacturer makes a single-phase sectionalizer that is designed for installation in a pad-mounted enclosure. • Automatic switch operators are also available.000 amperes or higher for the electronically controlled units. if not yet available for pad-mounted enclosures. Some manufacturers have overhead SF6 gas-insulated reclosers available that. These can be spring-operated or battery-operated. Reclosers Single-phase and three-phase hydraulic and three-phase electronically controlled reclosers are available for pad-mounted enclosures. initiate tripping. A control module uses electronic circuitry to sense a fault. The interrupting module also has current-limiting capabilities. Sometimes the voltage withstand characteristics of blown partial-range current limiting fuses mandate the simultaneous operation of both fuses so that the open circuit created by the expulsion fuse removes voltage from the partialrange current limiting fuse. oil switches were available. • Switches can be equipped with stored-energy operators for local operation. In the past. will operate for high-level faults.

Doing so might be a response to load conditions on the distribution system or to remove load from a transformer or other piece of equipment that is scheduled for maintenance or replacement. Faulted-Circuit Indicators Faulted-circuit indicators (FCIs) can be used to locate a faulted section of underground primary cable. the lineman is easily exposed to the energized parts. Another instance is where the suspected faulted section has been removed manually and the locked-out device is remote from the fault location. however. although such an accessory may be field-installed. They could also be individuals who have tampered with an enclosure. circuit breakers. there are circumstances in which this would be applicable. traditional live-front style uses standard outdoor porcelain or polymer terminations. REMOTE OPERATION OF SECTIONALIZING EQUIPMENT Reason for Remote Operation There are several reasons to remotely operate a recloser or switch. air-break pad-mounted switchgear is available in either live-front or dead-front styles. Another instance is when cold-load pickup current or a switching surge is the suspected cause of the overcurrent condition. Dead-front gear generally limits access to energized parts by the use of modular elbow-type terminations. and load-break-type switches with motor operators or other types of power operators. One instance is where the underground circuit feeds overhead taps that are unfused. Only dead-front style switchgear is currently approved for new construction by RUS. One reason is to redistribute load. Yet another reason is to retry a recloser or vacuum switch after a lockout caused by an overcurrent condition. A sectionalizer that is designed to differentiate between a true fault current and a current spike caused by magnetizing inrush or cold-load pickup should be chosen. Devices That Can Be Remotely Operated Devices that can be remotely operated are electronically controlled reclosers. FCIs sense the passage of a fault current and display a fault condition. two. Dead-Front Typical air-insulated.Underground System Section a l i z i n g – 1 0 5 3 intended to work in conjunction with an upstream recloser or breaker and is available in one. Field personnel responding to a power . vacuum or oil switches. Another reason is to isolate a faulted portion of the system. Another danger is re-energizing a faulted line or transformer that will lead to increased equipment damage and possible human injury. but often must be operated with insulated sticks on fused positions. The older. On an underground system. or three counts before operating configuration. this practice is not typically routine. Precautions in Remote Operation The most serious danger in remotely closing a device is the possibility of energizing a line or equipment that is in contact with human beings. or stress cones for terminating cable. Live-Front Vs. Both types of switch are generally operated by external handles on source positions. such as through an automobile that has damaged a pad-mounted transformer. Switches can be opened to isolate the system section that is suspected of containing the fault. The recloser or vacuum switch that opened to isolate the fault is then closed to reestablish service to the remainder of the system. The FCIs sense fault current and display fault conditions faulted line section will be located between the last indicator showing a fault condition and the first indicator showing a normal condition. These devices must typically be ordered with a remote open-and-close accessory. These could be cooperative personnel working on the line or members of the general public who are in contact accidentally. Once removed. A removable barrier just inside the doors provides some level of protection of personnel. Additional information on the application of sectionalizers may be found in Electrical Distribution System Protection by Cooper Power Systems (1990).

. For example. an inrush current will flow through the cable. These efforts have helped to eliminate some of the operational problems. The indicator simply responds to any current that Inrush and backfeed exceeds its trip rating.1 0 6 – Se c t io n 3 3 application problems can be outage can trace the status of corrected through a better the FCIs and quickly identify The FCI can be understanding of how an the faulted line section. As a result. • Sensitive current resets and low-voltage resets for use on lightly loaded circuits. the FCI is quite When properly specified and applied. FCIs reliable and can be a valuable fault-locating tool. The inrush current decays to the normal current value after some time. the sensor cannot distinguish between fault current. automatic resetting units will change back to a “NORMAL” indication when the inrush current decays to the normal load current level. ers now supply FCIs with an power. inrush and backfeed curcurrents that exceed rents that exceed the trip the trip rating cause rating cause false tripping. Improved system reliability. Reduced stress on system components. field personoptions. only the manual reset units continue to show a false trip condition. RELIABILITY OF FAULTEDCIRCUIT INDICATORS Older designs of FCIs have been plagued with operational and application problems. Reduced crew and equipment cost. and Improved consumer relations. They a valuable FCI works and its limitations. If this inrush current exceeds the trip rating of an FCI. and • Sensors suitable for three-phase use where cables are close together. the FCI will show a fault condition. which can greatly renel must search for the fault by duce or eliminate problems associated with false sectionalizing and reclosing on the fault until the tripping. Many When power is restored to a de-energized line. faulted line section is located. inrush current. some manufacturtion and promptly restore fault-locating tool. FCIs are available with the following: tripping. However. This condition is reviewed in the next subsection. In this situation. Reduced blowing of expensive fuses. An operational problem that persists is false tripping caused by backfeed currents. • An inrush restraint feature to minimize false trips caused by inrush currents. This latter method The following information gives guidelines for of fault locating is time-consuming and can proper selection and application of FCIs. they have acquired a false reputation with some utilities as being unreliable. Inrush Currents Inrush current is a higher than normal current that occurs when a distribution circuit is energized. provide the following advantages: • • • • • • Reduced outage time. manufacturers have improved the design of FCIs. FALSE TRIPPING An FCI has a sensor to detect the current magnitude present in a cable. array of automatic timed reset Without FCIs. A current that exceeds the trip rating of an FCI causes the display to show a faulted condition. In response. properly specified and applied. As a result. can then isolate this line secIn addition. Unfortunately. and backfeed current. and IEEE has approved a guide for testing FCIs (Standard 495). The types of inrush currents and their decay times are explained above in the subsection Effect of Inrush Current on Sectionalizing Devices. Manual reset units will continue to show a fault condition until they are reset by hand. • Rugged current sensors that operate in accordance with IEEE Standard 495. When cause cable insulation deterioration.

Backfeed Currents Backfeed currents continue to produce false trips and resets of FCIs.8: Inrush Current Resulting from Operation of Single-Phase Recloser. phases B and C experience inrush current. The outage crew now finds FCIs tripped on all three phases. it is difficult to choose an FCI trip rating that is greater than the unknown inrush value. the falsely tripped FCIs remain in “FAULT” indication following recloser lockout. When the recloser recloses. backfeed currents can remain on the system for long durations. Usually the recloser locks open before the FCIs can reset. a fault on phase A trips the FCIs on phase A.8 illustrates this situation. fault indication Load 2 FIGURE 3. The first is when a three-phase recloser or breaker protects the underground cable.7: Inrush Current Resulting from Operation of Three-Phase Recloser. More common backfeed currents result from a delta-connected motor load on a grounded-wye. Therefore. the cooperative engineer needs to be aware of situations that likely produce backfeed currents. The other two phases remain energized and continue to supply partial power to any delta-connected motor loads. Backfeed currents can occur on three-phase circuits when a single-phase fault is cleared by a single-phase protective device. If the circuit impedance is low enough. The motors produce backfeed currents along the underground cable to the fault location. grounded-wye transformer.7 illustrates this phenomenon. FCI 3 Load 1 FCI 2 Single-Phase Recloser FCI 1 Inrush Current FCI 4 FCI 5 LEGEND the FCI trip rating. For this reason. then those FCIs will show a “FAULT” condition. For example. fault indication FIGURE 3. The 15. For example. normal indication FCI. A fault on the main line trips the FCIs along the main line. unlike inrush currents. The inrush restraint feature increases the cost of the FCI by about 35 to 40 percent. It is difficult to predict the magnitude of inrush current. normal indication FCI. This additional cost is easily justified on underground systems that “see” the cycling action of a source-side recloser. If the current level is high enough. this discharge current could be large enough to trip FCIs located between the fault and the capacitor bank. Therefore. most manufacturers offer an inrush restraint feature on their FCIs. For example. it will falsely trip the FCIs between the cable fault and Fault Inrush Current FCI. Again. Two other situations produce false tripping and obscure a fault location. some of the laterals may experience inrush that exceeds . Figure 3. this feature disables the trip response for 15 to 60 cycles following the energization of cable. The recloser or breaker opens and interrupts power to all three phases. Typically. Figure 3. consider an underground system that serves several three-phase transformers. During 60-cycle delay allows the inrush current to decay to its normal load value. a fuse will clear a cable fault on one phase while the other two phases remain energized. Any load-side capacitors connected to the faulted phase may discharge into the fault. To address this situation. However. If this current exceeds the FCI trip ratings. A cable fault in the first cable section is cleared by a fuse. The second situation is when a single-phase recloser protects a main line with one or more laterals. a timedelay feature will not alleviate the problem.Underground System Section a l i z i n g – 1 0 7 3 Three–Phase Recloser A-Phase B-Phase C-Phase Fault FCI 1 Inrush Current FCI 2 FCI 3 FCI 4 Load 1 LEGEND FCI.

5 should not be installed on a distribution system. and backfeed currents. If the actual cable diameter cent of the normal line-to-ground voltage. delta-connected transformers . Most is less.9: Trip Response for Peak-CurrentSensitive Units.000 100 Current (Amperes. Therefore.1 .000 3. The accuracy of the trip rating also affects selection. delta trans1 . .004 .2 Time (Seconds) .01 . voltage that is lower than 86 percent of the The manufacturer should be asked to supply the nominal voltage. these units would not be suitable for grounded-wye. inrush. A feedback voltsenses the magnetic field produced by the flow age can also exist on the faulted phase.05 .6 grounded-wye. The FCI sensor than three amperes.009 . it is should be close to These same backfeed curimportant to select an FCI that rents and voltages can also remains sensitive to the minithe available minimum produce false resets. RMS) FIGURE 3. Because . The mal line-to-ground voltage for a grounded-wye.002 .000 4. this voltage can reach 86 percific cable diameter.09 .006 . then the trip rating is reduced. At long distances from the substation. false reset is a more likely mounts around an underground cable and problem than is false tripping.02 1.3 SELECTING A TRIP RATING Load and Fault Current Magnitudes The trip rating of an FCI is the current magnitude that causes the FCI to display a fault condition. the FCI trip rating should be close to the available minimum fault current level. manufacturers suggest a trip rating of two-andone-half to three times the expected load current. 800 amperes could trip for any All FCIs on the faulted phase current in the range of 720 to The FCI trip rating may show a “FAULT” indication.1 0 8 – Se c t io n 3 3 the delta-connected motor load. the available fault current may get close to the magnitude of the load current. FCIs are typically calibrated at a spedelta transformers. However. For grounded-wye netic field. Again. an FCI with a trip rating of . As a result. Most FCIs have an accuracy of ±10 percent.9 . Likewise. the trip rating should be close to the fault current magnitude.005 .08 .7 . . low-voltage reset units have a minimum reset a large cable diameter increases the trip rating.07 .8 formers with delta-connected loads. An ideal trip rating is low enough to sense the minimum available fault current and high enough to ignore load. . larger the radial distance. 880 amperes.000 200 400 300 400 600 800 . If the available fault current level is unknown. Therefore.000 1. the available fault current drops substantially.06 .400 2. Because mum fault current throughout fault current level. the FCI is more susceptible to false tripping. This magnetic field is a function of voltage levels can reach 50 percent of the northe radial distance from the conductor.001 200 500 600 700 800 900 1.03 .008 .007 . For example.04 . the margin between the trip rating and the inrush and backfeed currents is decreased. the weaker the maggrounded-wye transformer. To meet this criteria. the FCI trip level is usually its range of trip ratings. Thus.200 1. These of current.4 this situation should not occur frequently. hundreds of amperes and reset Conductor size also affects current level is usually less trip ratings.003 .

Note the difference in the trip response time for the two types.10. Coordination with Current-Limiting Fuses Some FCIs are peak-current sensitive and will operate within two milliseconds for any current that exceeds the trip rating.Underground System Section a l i z i n g – 1 0 9 3 cable diameter at which the FCI is calibrated and a correction curve for other cable diameters. If the FCI is not the peak-current type. For example.100 amperes or greater. The peak-current-sensitive FCI has a response time of two milliseconds. If the total clear time of the fuse is faster than the FCI response time.10.10 shows the time-current characteristics for this type of FCI. a 450-ampere FCI will coordinate with a current-limiting fuse that has a let-through current of 1. As shown in Figure 3. a 450-ampere FCI coordinates with a 30E and a 100E fuse. refer to Figure 3. These slower devices should be compared with the time-current curves for the source-side protective device.10: Trip Response for 450A and 800A FCIs. If the line current does not drop to zero within 60 seconds. . 450A FCI 15E 10 30E 100E 1 Time (Seconds) 0.9 shows the response time of peak-sensitive units. Figure 3.10.11. Adaptive-Trip FCI The adaptive-trip FCI does not have a specified trip rating. the adaptive-trip FCI must be checked for coordination with upstream protective devices.01 0.1 0. Figure 3. For example. look at the 800-ampere curve of Figures 3.000 amperes.000 LEGEND Fuse Minimum Melt Curve Fuse Total Clear Curve FCI Trip Response Curve FIGURE 3. this device responds to a sudden increase in current followed by a loss of current. Like the other types of FCIs. For example. Instead of tripping at a predetermined current magnitude.3 seconds (300 milliseconds). For proper coordination with link-type fuses. The trip mechanism will release and show a fault indication only if the line current drops to zero.001 10 800A FCI 100 Current (Amperes) 1. To set the trip mechanism. including current-limiting fuses. the FCI will not show a fault condition. To coordinate. the FCI must see an increase of 130 amperes within a 50-millisecond time or 100 amperes within an 80-millisecond or greater time. the FCI curve must be to the left of the total clear curve of the fuse at the minimum fault current value. the clear time is approximately three milliseconds. consider a sensor type B shown in Figure 3. the trip-set condition will reset to normal. Proper coordination means that the FCI will trip before the fuse clears the fault. Figure 3. its trip response time is a function of the current magnitude. For a minimum fault current of 1.11 shows the increase in current magnitude required to set the trip mechanism.000 10. This trip-set and trip-release sequence prevents the FCI from showing a false trip as a result of motor starting load or cold-load pickup. The other FCI has a response time of 0. The peakcurrent devices will coordinate with all types of fuses. The FCI should also coordinate with a source-side current-limiting fuse. For most current-limiting fuses.9 and 3. the FCI must trip at the letthrough peak-current level before the fuse clears the fault.

whether to use a three-phase FCI or three singlephase FCIs. 0. The set of FCIs on the source side will show a “FAULT” indication for a 0.002 the underground segment. the FCI is in trip recable section. Most cable sections terminate in some type of pad-mounted equipment. 2 1 .11: Trip-Set Characteristics for Adaptive-Trip FCI. Another consideration for this application is Courtesy of Fisher Pierce Division of Thomas & Betts. Some applications of underground segments are the following: • • • • Lake or river crossings. this FCI will adjust to one display. 0.12.08 0.008 at each end of an underground cable section.6 .000 10.006 A set of FCIs at each cable end will enable 0.8 Time (Seconds) . thus changes in the nominal line current.04 Because these underground segments are part of a main feeder. The three-phase FCI After the circuit is re-enerhas three current sensors and gized. the FCI continuously readjusts itself for device will be open on the faulted phase. FIGURE 3.02 . Because this equipment also provides easy access to the cable.1 0. The following subsections show several types of underground systems and the placement of FCIs. showing which underground cable is faulted. During this 60-second on any of the three phases. a set of solid-blade disconnects is placed 0.4 . This feature helps preunderground cable is sectionalvent false trips caused by ized with single-phase devices.2 0. and Airport glide path crossings.1 1 0 – Se c t io n 3 3 Sensor Type 100 80 60 40 M L BD 20 10 8 6 4 WHERE TO LOCATE FCIS For an exact section of faulted cable in an underground system to be located.01 Rather. an FCI must be placed at the source end of each cable section. This period.06 0.000 Current (Amperes) ing overhead feeder. In addiThe single-phase sectionalizing tion. they are usually not fused. Underground Segments of Overhead Feeders Overhead feeders may occasionally have segments of underground cable. 0. upstream reclosers. Transmission line crossings. The second set of FCIs on Fisher Pierce Fault Indicator the load side will show a “normal” indication for Model 1547 Adaptive Trip Time Current Curves a fault on the underground cable and a “FAULT” (5A Base Current) indication for a fault on the overhead feeder. the location is ideal for FCIs. Highway crossings. The display shows Locate FCIs at the the line current within 60 seca “FAULT” indication for a fault source end of each onds. indicator is suitable when the straint. This arrangement is shown in Figure 3.001 fault on the underground cable or on the outgo10 100 1. These underground segments are often installed to avoid overhead line clearance problems.004 workers to determine if a fault has occurred on 0.

12: FCI Placement on Overhead Feeder with Underground Segment. a set of FCIs is needed on the load end of the underground segment only. only the FCI on the faulted cable will show a “FAULT” indication. a trip rating should be selected that will respond to the fault current available during normal and alternate feeds. a three-phase FCI is suitable only when the feeder is protected by single-phase sectionalizing devices. . if the protective device does not have phase indicators. a three-phase sectionalizing device will open on all phases. Another consideration for this type of system is the choice of a trip rating. it is better to use three single-phase FCIs. If the sectionalizing device has indicators to show the faulted phase.Underground System Section a l i z i n g – 1 1 1 3 Recloser FCIs Underground Line Segment FCIs FIGURE 3. however. As covered in the preceding subsection. Three-Phase Underground Feeders The most extensive type of underground feeder connects two substations. these circuit exits are protected by a three-phase sectionalizing device. These segments may contain above-ground sectionalizing points or grounding points. In many cases. As this FCI adapts to different line current levels. For this type of application. During normal operation.13: FCI Placement on Three-Phase Underground Feeder. In this application. Another option is to use an adaptive-trip FCI. the FCIs are placed on the circuit exits and on either the incoming or outgoing cables in each sectionalizing cabinet. The use of three single-phase FCIs also works well on underground circuit exits from a distribution substation. a set of FCIs must be placed at each end of the underground segment. In contrast. However. If the devices are three-phase. To select a proper trip rating. the cooperative engineer must consider the load and fault currents during normal and alternate feeds. Here. Switchgear 1 Switchgear 3 Substation A FCIs FCIs Substation B Switchgear 2 FIGURE 3.13 shows this arrangement. it does not indicate which phase. unless the three-phase protective device has an individual target for each phase. A third consideration is the use of a threephase FCI or three single-phase FCIs. the only way to identify the faulted phase is to use a single-phase FCI on each cable. Some areas may have very long segments of underground cable. it responds properly during normal and alternate feeds. Placing an FCI at these locations will locate the exact faulted cable section. Figure 3. A three-phase FCI will show a “FAULT” indication. If possible. regardless of which phase is faulted. this feeder has an open point with each side being fed by a different substation.

O. . Normally Open Point FIGURE 3.O. These subdivisions often contain multiple singlephase loops and may contain a three-phase underground sub-feeder. FCIs must also be placed in each switching. This arrangement should work properly regardless of the location of the loop open point. Underground Residential Subdivisions An underground residential subdivision usually consists of single-phase transformers and cable operated as an open-loop system. Pad-Mounted Transformer FCI N. In addition to being placed at each transformer.O. Pad-Mounted Transformer Single-Phase. If SW1 and SW2 were three-phase junction cabinets without fused taps. Normally Open Point N.14: FCI Placement for Single-Phase Open Loop. then FCIs must also be placed on each load-side cable. Large subdivisions can be more complicated.O. Pad-Mounted Transformer FCI N. FIGURE 3. sectionalizing.O.14 shows this system with one FCI for each transformer. LEGEND Three-Phase. Figure 3.O.15 shows FCI placement in a large subdivision. LEGEND Single-Phase.1 1 2 – Se c t io n 3 3 Riser Pole Riser Pole N. This arrangement lets field personnel open the cabinet and determine which phase has the faulted cable.15: FCI Placement for Underground Subdivision with Three-Phase Source. Riser Pole Riser Pole Switching Cabinet Switching Cabinet N. or junction cabinet.O. N. Figure 3. N.

FCIs are. For example. these devices are more likely to show correct indication than is the manual-reset type. the use of manual-reset FCIs is not recommended. As expected. These types have different applications based on their limitations. these indicators will confuse crews and probably increase the time required to locate the faulted cable section. After a crew locates the faulted line section. thus. this device resets to “NORMAL” when it detects the return of load current in the cable. If this becomes a common occurrence. Automatic Reset FCIs are also available with automatic reset. Without remote indication. First. a load of 30 kW on a 24.1 ampere. they must open all enclosures located before the faulted cable section and reset each FCI.16: Current-Reset FCI. Courtesy of Fisher Pierce Division of Thomas & Betts. Failure to reset an FCI is more likely on an underground than on an overhead system. . During a future outage.9/14. The costs of these different types are very similar.and 25-kV systems. On 35. 1. Current Reset Current reset is the most common type of automatic reset. The lower reset levels. and 0. The device uses the same sensor to detect fault and load current (see Figure 3. Before selecting a current-reset FCI. The standard reset current levels are three amperes. this FCI cannot be used on underground systems protected by current-limiting fuses. The load current must be higher than the reset current level. The unit has a flag display housed inside a clear viewing window. It typically costs half that of the automatic-resetting types. As a result.4-kV system has a current of about two amperes. are very sensitive and can be susceptible to the magnetic fields of nearby cables.5 amperes and less. An FCI with a three-ampere reset level would never reset. crews will soon ignore the fault indicators. Each type of automatic reset and how it is best used is described below. For these reasons. After tripping. this step may be neglected. After tripping. these devices can sense when the cable is re-energized and will then reset to a “NORMAL” indication.5 amperes. less desirable when used on an underground system placed along the front property lines. the normal load current in a single-phase residential subdivision may be less than three amperes.16). service personnel must reset this FCI in the field. determine the normal load current. there are trade-offs for this reduction in cost. Manufacturers offer many types of automatic reset. Any tripped indicators that service personnel miss will continue to show a “fault” indication. and • No remote indicator. 1. On an underground system. During afterhours power restoration or during inclement weather. These stray fields can lead to false tripping and resetting in the following applications: FIGURE 3. crews cannot determine the indicator status without opening each enclosure.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 1 1 3 3 SELECTING A RESET METHOD Manual Reset The manual-reset type is the simplest and least expensive FCI. Because it operates more slowly. the FCIs are usually located inside pad-mounted enclosures. the automatic-reset FCIs can be a more reliable fault-locating tool. Because the reset is automatic. This device has two other limitations: • No coordination with current-limiting fuses.

The resistance probe will limit the fault Current-reset FCIs current if there is a primarycan be placed in all Some of these FCIs can be to-secondary insulation system equipped with magnetic shieldfailure. ondary terminal and the circuit Reset subsection on page 113. Courtesy of Fisher Pierce Division of Thomas and Betts. voltage. this device would be suitable for a lightly loaded three-phase circuit. • Three-phase junction cabinets. The current-reset FCIs reideal for lightly loaded circuits quire only a current source to where the load current is not reset. This FCI is not affected by the magnetic equipment and enclosures. • Single-phase fuse cabinets. these devices high enough to reset a currentcan be placed in all types of pad-mounted reset FCI. Courtesy of E.17: Low-Voltage-Reset FCI. Therefore. and • Three-phase switchgear. FIGURE 3. When the cables. it is imhave reset voltages of 120 volts portant to know the minimum or 277 volts nominal and can be used in singlereset voltage. As a safety feature. primary to the secondary side of the transformer. The current senquire magnetic shielding to sor has contact with the priThe low-voltage-reset minimize the effect of nearby mary circuit neutral. The current sensor to detect Low-Voltage Reset fault current would not have to be as sensitive as The low-voltage-reset FCI is equipped with a a sensor that must also detect load currents of less probe that connects to the secondary voltage than three amperes to reset. Schweitzer Manufacturing Division of SEL. fields of nearby cables during reset.18: High-Voltage-Reset FCI. This is described in FCI senses the proper amount FCI is ideal for lightly more detail in the Current of voltage between the secloaded circuits. therefore. terminal of a transformer (see The more sensitive sensors reFigure 3.17). Most units For three-phase use. this sensor has a lumped resistance probe and 30-kV insulated cable.1 1 4 – Se c t io n 3 3 • Single-phase junction cabinets. . Figure 3. neutral. This value should be high enough phase or grounded-wye.O. The low-voltage-reset FCI is equipment. grounded-wye threeto prevent a false reset caused by a feedback phase transformers. it will reset. types of pad-mounted ing to prevent this problem. This effect is described in the Backfeed The voltage sensor will likely cross from the Currents subsection earlier in this section.

Another concern on pacity of 800 flashing or beeping hours during a three-phase systems is the chance of feedback 10-year operating life. regardless of the circuit or greater for a period of conditions (see Figure 3. If the time period is devices to ensure moisture necessary for too short. fault current flows through the conductor and a portion returns along the neutral. If this feedback most manufacturers recommend replacing the battery. This unit is battery powered and has an LED flashing light display. it is very important the FCI. Correct placement can be done in one of two ways. The high-voltage-reset FCI Time-reset devices mounts on the capacitive test do not respond Time Reset point of an elbow terminator The time-reset FCI resets to (see Figure 3.19: Time-Reset FCI. These units use a systems. fore the faulted cable section For use with three-phase proper operation. Without this shielding. A second problem occurs on a three-phase system.18). these devices must be lithium battery to keep the specified with magnetic shieldreset time during the power ing. An FCI mounted directly over the concentric neutral can sense this current. the FCI can reset beprotection. In a concentric neutral cable. Courtesy of Fisher Pierce Division of Thomas & Betts. Because these devices will not reset because of feedback voltage or currents. The first method is to train the concentric neutral conductors back over themselves on the FIGURE 3. Most batteries have a carents in nearby cables. time. If an FCI is installed directly over the concentric neutral.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 1 1 5 3 voltage exceeds five kilovolts. These devices can be to select a time period that is used only on elbow terminaCorrect FCI sensor long enough for crews to retors with capacitive test points. it may not detect the fault current because the magnetic field is canceled or reduced. they can be very helpful in some three-phase applications. is located. it will falsely trip the fault indicator. spond and check the status of Care must be used on these placement is the FCIs. it must be replaced with a new unit.19). the resulting magnetic field of the neutral tends to cancel the magnetic field of the conductor. voltage on the faulted phase. about three minutes will reset Therefore. During a phase-to-ground fault. If the unit does not have a replaceable battery. At the end of 10 years. an outage and to power a flashing LED or beeping FCI can show a false trip or reset caused by curtype of fault indicator. SENSOR INSTALLATION Proper Placement on Cable During a phase-to-ground fault. Correct placement of the FCI minimizes these problems. . current can flow in the concentric neutral of the unfaulted phases. A primary to feedback voltage “NORMAL” after a specified voltage level of five kilovolts or current. High-Voltage Reset an FCI will falsely reset. If the current is large enough.

respectively. Three-phase applications require the use of shielded sensors.21 illustrate correct and incorrect FCI placement. thus. Instead. the neutral will carry most of the fault . and junction cabinets. 1990. Adapted from Yeh.17. some closed-core sensors are designed to detect very low current flow. When underground cables are close together.or 10-mil tape. an FCI must show—by a visual display. A sensor that is not magnetically shielded can sense the magnetic field of adjacent conductors. This is a definite advantage in areas where snow or vegetation may obscure a visual display. However. pad-mounted equipment. as low as 0.20: Correct Placement of FCI Sensor. The test must verify that the indicator will continue to show “NORMAL” when the sensor is at the manufacturer’s specified distance from an unshielded cable carrying a fault current. FAULT INDICATION To be of any use. Figures 3. These sensors cannot be used in three-phase equipment. the impedance of the tape shield is large enough that it carries very little fault current. RF FCIs are also significantly more effective Concentric Neutral Must Be Looped Back Through Sensor Core to Cancel Effect of Current in Neutral FIGURE 3. A fault current on one conductor can produce a magnetic field strong enough to trip the FCIs on the other two conductors. The FCI is placed on the cable above the concentric neutral conductors. susceptible to false trips and resets.22 shows an FCI with an RF signal output. show FCIs with remote LED and visual flag displays. The second method is to train the neutral conductors to the outside of the FCI. cable.21: Incorrect Placement of FCI Sensor. Adapted from Yeh. An RF FCI eliminates the need to look for the unit.1 1 6 – Se c t io n 3 3 current. These conditions exist in threephase pad-mounted transformers. Effect of Adjacent Conductor Current The FCI current sensor responds to the magnetic field that results from a fault current flowing through the underground cable.20 and 3. Therefore. These sensors are extremely sensitive to low magnetic fields and. a radio frequency (RF) output. The FCI is then installed over the portion of the cable where the neutral conductors are overlaid. The sensor must not be affected by orientation. 1990. Figures 3.1 ampere. This false indication can be avoided by not using unshielded current sensors in threephase. Figure 3. IEEE Standard 495 requires a test for the effect of adjacent current-carrying conductors.19 and 3. For a shielded cable with 5. A shielded sensor forms a complete magnetic circuit around the conductor to which it attaches. sectionalizing cabinets. these magnetic fields can overlap. FIGURE 3. an FCI can be placed directly over a shielded cable without adversely affecting the operation of the FCI. effectively shielding the sensor from nearby magnetic fields. or other means—that a fault condition occurred.

22: Typical Radio Transmitter Unit or can be supplied with a lead to allow remote to Accommodate Up to 12 FCIs. This size of opening is definitely easier to For existing equipment. Courtesy of mounting. extreme care must be used in correctly connecting the secondary leads to establish the proper polarity. it is suitable for use in pad-mounted transformers only. This type of FCI provides some advantage in large subdivisions because crews can first check an FCI in the middle of a cable run and trace the fault from there instead of from the dip pole. The display can thus be flag display and LCD readout are typically viewed without opening the piece of equipment. The flashing light is A viewing window for a flag display must easily seen at night but can sometimes be diffibe large enough to expose its face. through the enclosure wall.O. housed behind a clear viewing window that This mounting method does require installing a ranges from one to three inches in diameter (see viewing window on the enclosure. One type of directional into the three-inch diameter circle. Some models of the directional FCI must be connected to a secondaryvoltage bushing or an elbow test point in order to establish the direction of fault current flow. fying the faulted section of and the LED flashing light. Most padFigure 3. outage crews must open the transformer or switchgear. Schweitzer Manufacturing Division of SEL. The directional feature is also useful if cable circuits are operating in parallel. This process can be timeis that the fault-locating consuming. A circle is cut powers the flashing light display. The Plexiglas are useful in locations where fault current might provides some protection from impact and entry flow in either direction. such as a padlock and releasing the captive bolt. An internal battery one. This opening is then Some FCIs have directional capability. Common types include the reduces the time spent identiflag display. A cable. especially when process is faster because the crew is under pressure to An FCI indicates a crews do not have to open locate the fault and restore fault condition by pad-mounted equipment. which requires unlocking when the cable is relatively inaccessible. the sensor. Then under bridges. Remote mounting of the . The more usual kind of inMounting the display rea visual display or dication is the visual display.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 1 1 7 3 display that was previously used had an indicator arrow that pointed toward the fault. or in diffithe cabinet must be restored to a secure condicult terrain. the equipment enclosure. the LCD readout. motely on the enclosure wall other signal. When this type of FCI requires secondary voltage. service. in subterranean vaults. the size of the flashing mounted equipment can now be ordered with light is only ¼-inch in diameter (see Figure provisions for mounting FCI remote indicators. usually a cult to see in bright sunlight. remote mounting kits install in a manner that maintains the integrity of are available. 3.19). These covered with a piece of Plexiglas®. Another advantage tion. Visual displays can be mounted on the sensor FIGURE 3.16). There are other models of directional FCIs that do not require a voltage connection. In contrast. To view a display that is mounted on E.

The display mounts directly through the hole. The cooperative engineer should specify that all FCIs meet the Short-Time Current Test of IEEE Standard 495. and Immersion corrosion test. the cooperative engineer should investigate the durability of this device to be sure that it is very difficult to damage or remove. Outdoor weathering of plastics test. This type of FCI has a battery-powered speaker that emits a distinctive tone after the passage of a fault. but. Indicators with fixed pickup settings will give false indications if the load current exceeds their rating. these changes in trip characteristics may impair coordination with system overcurrent protection. earth burial. and intermittent or continuous water submersion. In addition. a determined vandal could break through the Plexiglas and gain entry into pad-mounted equipment. where there are many fault indicators and an opportunity for communication circuits to connect several FCIs to a common SCADA remote terminal unit. there is no Plexiglas cover. The flashing light indicator presents less risk of forced equipment entry. An FCI must also operate under a varying range of temperatures. this standard requires the following design tests to ensure that FCIs will function in their harsh environments: • • • • • Temperature cycling test. Salt spray test. an FCI must continue to operate properly after being exposed to these high current levels. This approach might be useful in congested areas. A final concern is that the display maintains its state during normal handling in the field. In areas subject to vandalism. a display mounted on the sensor or a remote flashing light display should be considered. This reduces outage time and improves system reliability. However.1 1 8 – Se c t io n 3 3 flashing LED is possible with a fiber optic cable and requires only a ¼-inch hole. Application of acoustic FCIs is generally limited to locations where the equipment could be obstructed by snow or vegetation. Adaptive FCIs have the ability to accommodate increasing load currents. IEEE Standard 495 requires that FCIs operate properly in an ambient temperature range of -40 to 85°C. Acoustic indicators are usually time-reset with provisions for manual reset during circuit restoration. This test requires the display to maintain its indication state when the transformer lid is slammed open or shut. remote displays of either type are beneficial. Maximum Continuous Current An FCI must be capable of operation when exposed to the maximum continuous load current. such as shopping centers. In other areas. Remote displays allow restoration crews to trace fault indicators faster. IEEE Standard 495 requires an impact resistance test. Acoustic annunciation is another specialized type of FCI output. . However. Water submersion test. OTHER CONSIDERATIONS Fault Current Withstand FCIs are exposed to high fault currents. Another type of FCI output is a contact suitable for input to a distribution SCADA system. in some cases. To be reliable. Environmental Requirements An FCI must operate in harsh environments including direct sunlight. thus limiting the effectiveness of visual indicators. This is particularly important for indicators with mechanical flags. A ¼-inch hole is large enough to probe an object into the padmounted enclosure.

8 shows fault levels that may lead to destructive transformer failure for internal faults. 9. The short-circuit curves are normally used. This coordination may not always be possible. 2. Several of these devices can be operated remotely.6 can be used to evaluate the temperature increase in the concentric neutral or shield during faults. the emergency overload curves can be used for a more conservative approach or where the cable is normally operated near its continuous ampacity limit. (b) At the beginning of underground cable. All load-carrying components should be rated to withstand maximum through-fault currents on the system. 10. 6. 5. (c) At transitions from underground to overhead. 7.Underground System Section a l iz i n g – 1 1 9 3 Summary and Recommendations 1.2 and Table 3. Recommended locations are the following: (a) In substations. Sometimes the maximum interrupting rating of a protective device is rated in asymmetrical amperes but only a symmetrical fault current rating is available. Use Equations 3.1 seconds Protective device curves should fall to the right of and above this point to prevent unnecessary tripping. Current-limiting fuses should be used to protect against destructive transformer failure in high-fault areas. . (d) On taps off main feeders and sub-feeders. Equation 3. If actual withstand levels of I2t values are known for a particular transformer. Use the cable damage curves in Appendix F to determine if a protective device protects a cable against through-fault damage. The magnetizing inrush current point for a transformer is estimated as follows: Transformer Size Three-Phase Single-Phase >3 MVA ≤ 3 MVA >1 MVA ≤ 1 MVA Magnetizing Inrush Current 12 × base-rated full-load current for 0. Table 3.1 and 3.3 and Tables 3. Most of these are available in a pad-mounted type enclosure. current-limiting fuses or circuit reconfiguration should be used to limit the fault. and (c) Two times full-load current for 100 seconds up to 15 minutes. 11. A good rule of thumb for cold-load pickup current is the following: (a) Six times full-load current for one second. Frequently. Several types of protective devices are available for use on an underground system. 4. (e) On transformers. a fault resistance of zero to 10 ohms for underground cable and 30 to 40 ohms for overhead line is recommended.4 should be used to calculate a corresponding maximum symmetrical fault level. and (f) Within long feeders.2 through 3. Protective device curves should fall to the right of and above these points to prevent unnecessary tripping.1 seconds 8 × base-rated full-load current for 0. Fault current values should be available from system fault current study. Equation 3. Where the neutral/shield is reduced in size or is jacketed. these points may be modified on the basis of the type of load and local climate. If this is not possible. Zero ohms for underground and 30 ohms for overhead are less conservative and should be used only within the restrictions noted in the Minimum Available Fault subsection and subject to good engineering judgment and knowledge of the system. 3.1 to convert from symmetrical to asymmetrical. however. Proper location of protective devices will limit fault damage and the number of consumers affected by the fault and also help locate the fault. the temperature increase in the shield during faults may be more critical than the temperature increase in the phase conductor. 8. When minimum fault is calculated. (b) Three times full-load current for up to 10 seconds.

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causing a large inthe allowable loading of UD cable. set of circumstances. cables must supply the load during peak periods without overheating and within acceptable voltage limits. although crease in soil thermal resistivity. can limit circuit loading to a value less than the . it can lead to temperature of the insulation will not shorten thermal instability of the soil. Transformers must be designed to carry these temporary overloads while lasting 20 years or more. thermal operating limit of the cable. the suroperating temperature limits rounding soil may dry out. voltage regulation and flicker higher cable temperatures and shorter cable life. If cable temperature rises The maximum conductor to an excessive level.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 2 1 4 In This Section: Primary Cable Ampacity Equipment Loading Primary Cable Ampacity Pad-Mounted Transformer Sizing Summary and Recommendations For an underground distribution system to be operated reliably and efficiently. losses in the form of heat are Maximum insulation tempergenerated in the conductor ature is not the only consideraand insulation. To meet this requirement. By reviewing the conditions that affect primary and secondary cable ampacity and the ability of transformers to carry overloads for short periods. Voltage A simple definition of ampacity is the amount of drop is often the deciding element in very long current that a cable can carry under a specific cable runs. The current rating or ampacity of primary and secondary cables must be selected to economically serve the load over the lifetime of the installation. However. the two major system components—cables and transformers— must be sized properly. If the condition loading the cable to the maximum operating persists for an extended period. the engineer will have the tools to design the best UD system to meet various system requirements. Pad-mounted transformer kVA ratings must be selected to carry highly diverse loads with peaks that may exceed the transformer rating. ered. through a cable. When current flows ampacity is usually the limiting element. which will cause its life. For short runs and large currents. The ability of tion for an underground the cable to transfer this heat Ampacity = Current circuit. Soil temperature to the surrounding environRating of Cable around direct-buried cable or ment sets the actual ampacity conduit should also be considof the cable.

is also supply cable ampacity ratings for the special given for a particular installation being considinstallations. with virtually all combinations of single-phase. The conductor dated cable ampacity tables Use ampacity tables current required to produce and published IEEE Standard to pick cable ratings. in particular. Also. Two-conductor. three-phase. vee-phase. lation of the Temperature Rise and Load CapaAlthough these publications have served the bility of Cable Systems. which lists cables calculated with Equation 4. ICEA P-53-426. the basic procedure for calculating cable describe.1 2 2 – Se c t io n 4 4 In light of these aspects that affect the rating The actual computations are quite involved. They are Effective thermal resistance between the conductor and used on single-phase or three-phase primary ambient soil. These tables are fect the rate at which heat is removed from the now quite dated and are valuable only for the surface of the cable. in voltage up to 35 kV. addressed UD-style A method to accurately compute ampacity cables and. in ducts. new insulation still used today to calculate cable ampacity. these programs are sometimes expensive Equation 4. The ampacity rating of a culate ampacity ratings for the cables in their incable is the amount of current (in amperes) that ventories because ampacities for a large range of will cause the temperature of the conductor to cable sizes and installation conditions have alrise from the stated ambient temperature to. in air. Once RC and RT are calculated. Cable vendors can The change in conductor temperature. PC-based ampacity programs ered. micro-ohms per ft If an application arises that is not covered by Conductor current.1. On the basis of this definiinstallation conditions and parameters they tion. and multiple circuits. Such programs also help to perform sensitivity analyses in which different parameters can be varied to determine –T T their effect on the ampacity of the cable. An abstract of TC = I2 RC RT these tables is reproduced as Table 4. the effect of shield under various installation and operating condilosses on ampacities in single-conductor cables tions was first published in 1957 in a technical and temperatures in the earth surrounding paper by Neher and McGrath titled “The Calcuburied cables and ducts. It is compounds and manufacturing processes have used to calculate the maximum conductor temmade the older tables of limited use. which was issued in 1976. the insulation under specific conditions that afVolumes I and II. in kiloamperes these ampacity tables. but ready been calculated. from 600 volts to 500 kV. of a cable. ampacity will be explained. a more exact definition of ampacity but engineers will rarely find it necessary to calcanbe formulated. the temperature change can be 835-1994.1. concentric neutral power cables consist of one insulated central conductor Change in conductor temperature in degrees Celsius caused and one copper concentric neutral conductor by current-produced losses (T conductor/T ambient) applied helically over the insulation. The Insuperature as limited by the lated Conductor Committee of rated operating temperature of the IEEE compiled more upthe insulation. TC. Equation calculate ampacities for most cable installation 4. dated 1962. P-46-426. and in directburied situations. Power Cable Ampacities. in °C-cm/Watt underground distribution systems with operating Effective electrical resistance of the conductor.” This basic procedure is industry well over the years.1 can be solved for cable ampacity: arrangements and types of cable. UnfortuI = conductor ambient RC RT nately. the rated operating temperature of cation No.1 where: TC = RT = RC = I = . A newer publication. The ICEA created Publinot above. IEEE 835-1994 or Appendix G should be consulted.

04 1. and EPR Insulated.07 Continuous loading at maximum rating may lead to moisture migration away from the cables and increased soil thermal resistivity. no wind. CONDITIONS AFFECTING CABLE AMPACITY The maximum ampacity of a concentric neutral UD cable depends on the ability of its surrounding environment to dissipate the heat generated by internal losses. and soil thermal resistivity rho-90. Part 8. page XIII. Heat flows outward from where the losses are generated toward the jacket.08 In Duct 1. or ICEA Publication No. and neutral. NEMA WC 8 (reaffirmed 1982). The temperature gradient. page 83. when added to the ambient temperature of the soil (or air). . page 7. TR-XLPE. insulation. ** Two-conductor full-concentric-neutral cable in conduit in air at an ambient temperature of 40°C. P-46-426. Losses occur physically within the cable in its conductor. 100% load factor. 100% load factor. IEEE Publication No.16 50% Load Factor Buried In Duct 1. The multiplying correction factors for load factors of 50% and 75% are as follows: Correction Factors 75% Load Factor Cable Rating kV 15 Buried 1. 90°C. 100% LF Copper Aluminum Buried* 200 260 297 339 387 442 504 — — In Duct* 121 155 176 200 227 258 293 — — Duct in Air** 91 118 135 154 176 201 230 — — Buried* 156 203 232 264 302 344 393 437 488 In Duct* 94 121 137 156 177 201 228 255 288 Duct in Air** 71 92 105 120 137 156 179 200 226 * Two-conductor full-concentric-neutral cable in direct burial at an ambient temperature of 25°C. page VI. and their purchase cannot be justified by most cooperatives for occasional use. See “Power Cable Ampacities. depending on the type of insulation and elements associated with the installation of the cable. Adapted from ICEA S-66-524. full sun. NEMA WC 7 (12/84). and modified to 25°C ambient earth temperature by multiplying by 0.” ICEA Publication No. NEMA Publication No. Section 5. Section E.9636.1: Ampacities for Single-Phase Primary Underground Distribution Cable—XLPE. P-53-426 (Reaffirmed 1982). it causes a thermal gradient. equals the final conductor temperature. and IEEE Standard 835-1994.3. WC 50.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 2 3 4 TABLE 4. When heat flows through the thermal resistance of the various elements between the conductor and the surrounding soil. Conductor Size AWG or kcmil 4 2 1 1/0 2/0 3/0 4/0 250 300 Conductors Rated 15 kV. Losses in the insulation and neutral may or may not be negligible. and a condition of thermal runaway may occur. This conductor temperature must not exceed the operating temperature of the cable insulation system. S-135. and ICEA S-68-516.

Non-current-dependent losses are caused by losses in the dielectric and charging current loss.1: Ratio of Shield Loss to Conductor DC Loss (Ysc ) at 90°C as a Function of Shield Resistance (Rs). whereas 1/3 means the concentric neutral resistance is three times the resistance of the central conductor.35 0. 1/C 35-kV Aluminum Power Cables in Triplexed Formation. Current-dependent losses are ohmic losses in the conductor and concentric neutral and vary as the square of the current.1.3 0. Losses in the cable concentric neutral occur when voltage is induced on the neutral wires because of the mutual reactance between them and the central conductor. Generally. losses in the form of heat are produced in the conductor and its surrounding insulation and coverings. The dielectric loss is present any time the cable is energized. It is not usually necessary to calculate the resistance of the concentric neutral because it is expressed as a fraction of the known conductor ac resistance. They are a function of voltage and are present any time the cable is energized. the greater the neutral resistance for cable sizes below 1. Non-current-dependent losses are due to the presence of the electrical field within the cable dielectric. The rate at which the heat is removed from the cable determines the temperature rise within the dielectric and. Source: ICEA Publication No. the ampacity of the cable. For example. the value of the loss is proportional to the square of the voltage. Electrical losses can be divided into two types: current dependent and non-current dependent. This effect is graphically shown in Figure 4.25 Ysc FULL 1.1 FULL . When a cable is energized and current flows. These losses are 0. P-53-426.000 kcmil. full and 1/3 are the two concentric neutral resistance values specified in RUS Bulletin 1728F-U1 for primary cable.1 2 4 – Se c t io n 4 4 Electrical Losses One condition that affects cable ampacity is the magnitude of electrical losses.2 0. adding to the total system loss. the induced voltage will cause current to flow in a threephase application. Currentdependent losses are caused by current flow in the central and concentric neutral conductors. A full neutral means the neutral and phase conductors have the same resistance. thus.15 0. . Because safety practices require the neutral to be grounded at multiple points along its length.4 FULL 0.05 0 0 25 50 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 375 Rs (Microohms per Foot) FIGURE 4. Losses in the central conductor represent the main heat-generating component and are directly related to its ac resistance.000 kcmil 750 kcmil 500 kcmil 350 kcmil 4/0 AWG 1/3 FULL 1/3 1/6 1/3 1/3 FULL 1/6 1/6 1/3 0. the less the losses will be because of the proportional decrease in current magnitude.

The maxiof charging current and are separate from the real mum temperature rise of a cable depends on the power flow through the cable.8 1. load duration curve. Load factor is ductor losses. A second element that affects cable ampacity is Charging current losses are caused by the flow the load factor/loss factor of the load. Observations by 0 0. This condition occurs when there is 0.8 which the relationship can vary. which is normally FIGURE 4. their effects maximum load over a one-hour period. ity tables are based on the projected load factor Equations to calculate conof the circuit.2 0. defined as the ratio of the avcable capacitance.4 a constant load on the cable. are found in Section 1.0 of load factor and load factor squared.2 Load Factor + 0.8 (Load Factor)2 tionship can be expressed by the empirical formula shown in Equation 4. Loss factor compares current. done a 24-hour period than if the peak load was apat 100 percent loss factor.2 to the square of the current and the resistance. Per Unit Loss Factor .0 0. Note that both factors are related to time. The relaCurve C: Loss Factor = 0. to the peak losses over a specified period.4 0. dielectric loss.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 2 5 4 caused by the in-phase components of voltage Load Factor/Loss Factor and current induced in the dielectric. Per Unit. Typical load A curves for any distribution feeder will fall be0.1 through 1. B whereas the load factor depends only on the current (assuming constant voltage). The Although dielectric losses must be considered IEEE ampacity tables are based on loss factors when setting ampacity ratings for UD cables and determined on the basis of losses for the average are factored into the ampacity tables.6 tween the two curves. Loss calculations a smaller temperature rise if the load varies over involving charging current are. with curves A and B representing the theoretical limits between 0. proportional to voltage. The loss factor cannot be calculated directly from load factor because losses are proportional 0. Because losses vary as the square of the current. Figure 4.6 many utility engineers over the years have rePer Unit Load Factor sulted in a relationship between the two values Curve A: Loss Factor = Load Factor that gives a reasonable value of loss factor in Curve B: Loss Factor = (Load Factor)2 terms of its corresponding load factor. The effect of a load facthe charging current squared times the ac resistor less than unity is recognized in ampacity and tance of the cable. A cable will have any time the cable is energized.2 shows this relationship.7. losses caused by it are The loss factor is the ratio of the average losses proportional to the square of the voltage. Because charging current is temperature rise calculations by using loss factor. Losses are equal to plied for the whole day. Equadepends on the shape of the tions 1. charging erage load to the peak load.2.2: Relationship Between Load Factor and Loss Factor used for rural feeders. therefore. Charging current shape of the load curve and the thermal resisis a function of cable capacitance and is present tance of the heat transfer path. and charging current The relationship between average losses with loss for underground cables load factor and loss factor peak losses. Ampacare more pronounced at transmission voltages. The loss factor is always less than the load factor except where they are C both unity. the value of the loss factor can vary between the extreme limits 1.

3 shows the variation of thermal retwo sizes larger than necessary.1 2 6 – Se c t io n 4 4 type of soil (its texture and mineral content). and the structural arrangement of the soil particles. the cable temperature to future load factors during the expected life of rises. thereby and loss factor may be found in the NRECA losing contact with the cable. Choosing a load factor of 100 percent level.8(Load Factor)2 moisture content. the particles have only point-to-point conconductor temperature rise is caused by imtact with each other. which increases the effecof soil surrounding a buried cable to hinder the tive cross-sectional area available for heat transflow of heat from the cable or conduit surface is fer. increase their thermal resistivity. expressed in degrees Celsius-centimeter As the moisture migrates away from the cable per watt (°C-cm/watt).2. measurements (packing efficiency) of the soil are usually difficult and timecable ampacity. more than one-half the total trix. thus reducing the thermal resistivity of the a fundamental property called soil thermal resissoil (Boggs.2 . Electric Power Soil Thermal Resistivity Research Institute-sponsored research has shown Soil thermal resistivity (rho) is an important elethat. the thermal resistivity then starts to increase at a much higher rate. The paired heat flow through the ability of different soils to earth.3 shows that. Most shape of the particles. Knowing the efsistivity with moisture content for various types fect of the other conditions on cable ampacity will of soils. Chu. mal resistivity is shown to quickly increase. The tendency between soil particles. factor could lead to the choice of cable one or Figure 4. tivity. If the temperagives the minimum ampacity value. the soil is considered stable. An improperly high load the soil is considered thermally unstable. Rho is important in the surface for any reason. However.2 Load Factor+0. In place through a solid soil matrix. water fills the gaps ment that affects cable ampacity. and Rhadhakushna. is reached. 1980). Figure utilities assume soil properties 4. at high moisture levels. with all other ture continues to rise above an acceptable level. the higher the Loss Factor=0. the moisture content. consideration must be given around the cable increases. The thermal resistivity of a soil depends on the Equation 4. this drives away the moisture and may permanently This equation is shown as curve C in Figure 4. Below this moisture level. the lower its thermal resistance and the better its heat-dissipating ability. Certain clay soils tend to dry out and become baked when heated beyond a certain temperature. and adds an extreme thermal resistance to the Because the load factor of a cable determines heat dissipation path. thermal resistivity is basically constant ther because rho depends on many conditions down to low moisture contents of approximately that are not constant through the soil profile and two percent. to a lesser extent. Generally. If the cable temperature stabilizes at a safe the cable. by the consuming to perform. air layer between the soil and the cable surface pages 17–20. conditions being equal. Rho can be measured dissipate heat under these along a specific route to help High soil thermal conditions is determined by in selecting the proper cable resistivity reduces the particle size distribution size. As the moisture content is reduced. limestone screenings (a quarry waste by-prodSelecting an ampacity value is complicated furuct). As the thermal resistance its ampacity value. heat conduction takes selection of load capabilities of UD cables. reallow the engineer to make a more informed desistivity rises slowly until a critical moisture level cision about the value of load factor chosen. Clay is also an A more thorough discussion of load factor example of a soil that shrinks when dry. the thercan change with the seasons of the year. for well-graded soils such as that have led to reliable performance in the past. Within the masome instances. which creates an Distribution System Loss Management Manual. and.

A higher water content generally leads to a lower thermal resistivity. 160 150 140 130 Thermal Resistivity (°C-cm/Watt) 120 110 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 The ampacity tables in Appendix G list cablesoil interface temperatures alongside the current values. As expected. Figure 4.4: Thermal Resistivity of Soil at Various Locations. Usually during the cooler months. Soil thermal resistivity changes with moisture content. In most cases. Utility engineers commonly rate cables on the basis of this method. rain keeps the soil well saturated. The greater the depth. Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul 1952 Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec FIGURE 4. Source: Boggs. Because thermal resistivity and water content of the soil are interrelated. September..4 shows measured variation of soil thermal resistivity at four locations on a monthly basis. experiments were made that investigated the differences in temperature rise for equally loaded cable buried at intermediate depths from three to 20 feet. Years ago. it is reasonable to assume that these two properties will vary with seasonal and climate factors as well. Thermal efficiency of the soil depends mainly on its moisture content. 1980. January through May. for a soil of a particular type and a fixed water table level.3: Thermal Resistivity Versus Moisture Content for Various Soil Types. 1964). soil moisture varies with the seasons. These interface temperatures show that soil drying around a hot cable can lead to an increase in soil thermal resistivity and increased soil and conductor temperatures. the moisture content increases with depth. Interface temperature is the temperature attained by the outside surface of directly buried cable. Interface temperatures have been used in the past to rate cables because no other simple. and Rhadhakushna. Field studies suggest an interface temperature of 50°C to 60°C be used for clay and loam soils and 35°C for sandy soils (Arman et al. directly buried duct. dependable method exists. the less the change in moisture during the year. The warmer months have less rainfall and the soil dries out. or concrete encasement. Source: EEI Underground Systems Reference Book. and October. 1957. In most areas of the United States. The resistivity is shown to generally increase during the hot/ dry months of August.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 2 7 4 210 Crushed Shale 180 Silty Sand Ottawa Sand Thermal Resistivity (°C-cm/Watt) 150 Critical Moisture Content = 120 90 60 Fire Valley Sand Stone Screenings 30 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Percentage Moisture Content FIGURE 4. the results showed a lower rho and less temperature . Chu.

rise at 20 feet compared with three feet.5 shows that the temperature change follows essentially a sinusoidal curve that changes with the seasons.1 2 8 – Se c t io n 4 4 20 Depth Below Surface (Feet) 15 Air 1. If it is not feasible to make temperature measurements at the site. P-46-426. The earth acts like a heat sink in the summer and returns heat to the air in the winter. The temperature rise of the cable is added directly to the TABLE 4. .5: Effect of Depth on Soil Temperatures as Influenced by Seasonal Temperature Variations. Table 4. 1957. usable temperature ranges may be obtained from the state Department of Agriculture or the agricultural school of a state university. Unfavorable native soil conditions near the surface can be overcome for short runs by using a good thermal backfill in the vicinity of the cable. Source: EEI Underground Systems Reference Book. Ambient Soil Temperature Ambient soil temperature affects UD cable ampacity and must be considered when using ampacity tables. The ambient temperature is the normal soil temperature at the burial depth of the cable that would exist if the cable were not there. The cycle does not vary much from year to year. the increase in cable ampacity could never offset the extra cost of deeper burial.5 16 5 0 –5 Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Months Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec FIGURE 4. Temperature.2 gives typical temperature ranges that may be used when site-specific data are not available. Standard industry practice is approximately three feet as an acceptable minimum depth for almost all installations outside urban areas.5 Feet. Source: ICEA Publication No. Measurements show that soil temperature decreases with depth in summer and increases with depth in winter.2: Typical Ambient Soil Temperatures at a Depth of 3. The change of ambient temperature below the earth’s surface is caused by seasonal exchange of solar energy between air and earth. However. °C Location Northern United States Southern United States Summer 20 to 25 30 to 35 Winter 2 to 15 10 to 20 ambient temperature. Cyclical temperature changes below ground vary considerably from place to place and must be known for the specific location being considered.5 3 Temperature (°C) 10 6. Every ampacity table has been computed for a specific ambient temperature. Figure 4.

In addition to the conductor losses and the thermal quality of the soil. the arrangement of the phases in relation to each other affects the total system losses and. decreases the ampacity of the cable circuit. Observations from Ampacity Tables The following general observations can be made from reviewing the 1962 ICEA ampacity tables and IEEE Standard 835-1994 for different installation configurations: • Circulating current losses decrease and ampacities increase with increasing concentric neutral resistance.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 2 9 4 Daily variations in air temperature produce negligible changes in ambient earth temperatures below one foot. The most common way to reduce mutual reactance is to place the cables closer together. so mutual reactance will always exist. voltage differences are produced along the concentric neutrals of the other two phases. plus the heat-sink quality of the surrounding soil. Another point that must be considered when spacing cables close together is the mutual heating effect caused by the three conductors. and at as many intermediate points as required by the NESC. 14 AWG copper wires. dielectric loss is usually considered negligible when ampacity is calculated. Industry practice is to list concentric neutral sizes in relation to the resistance of the central conductor. Voltage differences—and. Load current flowing in the other two phases will cancel some of the magnetic field produced by current in one phase. a cable with 1/3-neutral would have a concentric neutral resistance three times the phase conductor. when added to the mutual heating effect of the other conductors in a trench. Mutual heating will decrease the load-carrying ability of the system. This heat. • The smaller the phase conductor. Another way to reduce circulating current losses is to increase the resistance of the concentric neutral. This may be done by reducing the number or size of the wires. No return current means the magnetic field outside the concentric neutral of each phase is not totally canceled out. INSTALLATION CONFIGURATIONS Physical Arrangement of Phases Example 4. The circulating currents produce heat. In the same way. ambient soil temperatures lag the air temperature by about two weeks to one month because of the high specific heat of the soil. the circuit ampacity. This necessary grounding of the neutrals at more than one point creates a cross connection which short-circuits the voltage between them and allows circulating currents to flow. However. For singlephase primary UD cable. . For this reason. Therefore. Cable Configuration and Circulating Current Various aspects of installation can affect the amount of current a cable can carry. thus. it produces a voltage difference along the length of the concentric neutral.1 shows how the physical arrangement of the phase conductors can affect ampacity. Because the net magnetic field around the phase is not completely canceled. there is no return current because the phase currents vectorially add to zero at the load. • The variation of ampacity with concentric neutral resistance is generally greater for spaced than for trefoil configurations. Safety standards require that the concentric neutrals of all jacketed UD cables be grounded and connected together at both ends of the cable run. at depths below 36 inches. there is a large variation of ampacity with neutral resistance. For example. neutral losses—are proportional to the mutual reactance of the cable system. Engineers recognize that the concentric neutral physically protects the cable. In a balanced three-phase application using concentric neutral cable. The preceding discussion shows that a threephase installation is more involved in terms of ampacity and that more factors limit its ampacity than for a single-phase circuit. thus. the smaller the variation of the circuit ampacity with neutral resistance. • For large conductors. cable is usually purchased for standard applications with a concentric neutral made up of at least six No. the axial spacing cannot be reduced below one cable diameter. Investigations have shown that. the current rating of most singlephase UD applications is limited by current-related losses in the conductor and neutral.

5 inches between phases. Use flat spacing for small conductor installations.5” A table similar to 4.6 is in a closely spaced trefoil or cloverleaf configuration. 36” FIGURE 4. For the larger conductor sizes. for aluminum conductor sizes up to 500 kcmil. Single Circuit. Ambient Soil Temperature = 25°C Continued .1 3 0 – Se c t io n 4 4 EXAMPLE 4. Examination of the two configurations of Table 4. 36” A B C 7.4 shows that.5” 7. the trefoil configuration gives higher ampacity ratings because circulating current losses are greater when flat spacing is used. three-phase primary circuits using concentric neutral jacketed cable. Table 4.3: Ampacity Table for 15-kV Copper Conductor.7. the spaced configuration gives greater current-carrying capability. Consider two direct-buried.3 can be made for aluminum conductors. Soil rho = 90. Circuit 2 is a flat configuration with “maintained spacing” of approximately 7. Conductor Temperature = 90°C. Maintained Spacing. for conductor sizes of 350 kcmil and larger.1: Comparing the Ampacity of Trefoil and Flat-Spaced Configurations. FIGURE 4.3. the trefoil arrangement produces fewer losses and greater ampacity as the load and load factor of the circuit increase. TABLE 4. Circuit 1 shown in Figure 4. the flat-spaced configuration gives greater ampacity values than does the trefoil. For 4/0 AWG and smaller conductors. For easier comparison of the two installations. as seen in Figure 4.000 (1/6 neut) 75% Load Factor 404 519 609 696 814 100% Load Factor 360 460 535 608 706 Flat-Spaced Configuration (Amperes) 75% Load Factor 432 516 572 635 705 100% Load Factor 377 448 496 548 605 * IEEE Standard 835-1994 Note. excerpts from their ampacity tables are listed in Table 4.6: Trefoil or Triangular Cable Configuration.* Trefoil Configuration (Amperes) Conductor Size 4/0 (1/3 neut) 350 (1/3 neut) 500 (1/3 neut) 750 (1/3 neut) 1. 75% and 100% Load Factor. Direct Buried.7: Flat Conductor Configuration.3 shows that.

Single Circuit. CONDUIT APPLICATIONS Installation in Conduit or Duct In this manual.) TABLE 4.1: Comparing the Ampacity of Trefoil and Flat-Spaced Configurations. Conductor Temperature = 90°C. .4: Ampacity Table for 15-kV Aluminum Conductor. Direct Buried. nonmagnetic conduit must be used for high-ampacity circuits where phases are enclosed in individual conduits. their ampacities will be essentially the same. steel conduit may reach temperatures adequate to cause cable failure by melting.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 3 1 4 EXAMPLE 4. The preceding discussion will prove useful in comparing closely spaced with spaced threephase circuits. For this reason. inattention to detail could lead to a marginal installation after much effort has gone into selecting the right cable and configuration for the project. Otherwise. Ambient Soil Temperature = 25°C Conclusions from Ampacity Tables After a comparison of the IEEE Standard 8351994 for trefoil against spaced arrangements with short-circuited and multigrounded concentric neutrals. • For larger size cables.000 (1/6 neut) 75% Load Factor 216 216 318 417 502 604 716 100% Load Factor 194 195 284 370 442 529 623 Flat-Spaced Configuration (Amperes) 75% Load Factor 241 247 361 446 513 575 675 100% Load Factor 214 218 311 387 443 498 582 * IEEE Standard 835-1994 Note. In some cases. Soil rho = 90. A duct bank means one or more runs of conduit which are usually encased in concrete that extends the full length of the run. the terms conduit and duct are used interchangeably to mean nonmetallic.* Trefoil Configuration (Amperes) Conductor Size 1/0 (full neut) 1/0 (1/3 neut) 4/0 (1/3 neut) 350 (1/3 neut) 500 (1/3 neut) 750 (1/3 neut) 1. nonmagnetic tubes made primarily of polyvinyl chloride or polyethylene. 75% and 100% Load Factor. When an installation specification calls for either a trefoil or maintained spacing (flat horizontal configuration). close attention should be paid to the spacing when the cable is laid. Note that if single cables are installed in a spaced configuration in individual steel conduit. it is generally better to keep them as close together as possible because the higher circulating currents of the spaced cables provide greater losses and lower ampacities than does the mutual heating effect of the trefoil configuration. the ampacity of the spaced configuration will be more than the trefoil arrangement because of the effect of lower mutual heating. (cont. The losses of the conduit added to the other losses of the circuit will reduce the ampacity even more. the same fields that produce losses in the concentric neutrals will also cause eddy currents and unacceptable heating of the steel. the following conclusions can be drawn: • When neutral losses are low in both cases. • When the circulating current losses of the trefoil are measurably greater than the spaced configurations.

For example. A sealed conduit system is also useful to keep water away from cables to reduce insulation treeing. Thermal resistance from the conductor ter heat flow.8: Direct-Buried Duct Bank Installation Using Rigid Nonmetallic Conduit. Cables are usually installed in ducts where they pass under roadways.1 3 2 – Se c t io n 4 4 Paved Driveway Paved Driveway 36” 18” 36” FIGURE 4. . rather. PVC conduit is approximately 480. tances in series: The inside diameter of the conduit should be as small as possible for bet1. In stiff soils the earth may not heal itself tightly back against the cables. It should be remembered this same principle might apply to cables installed with a vibratory plow. the inside diameter of surface to the outer jacket surface. ampacity tables do not list different ampacities and for different conduit sizes. Thermal resistance of the soil. a conduit has little effect on the final tempera2. The air space acts essentially like an insulating blanket to impede the flow of heat to the surrounding soil. the thermal resistivity of air is 4. The air between the cable and the inner conduit surface is the main reason why heat is not absorbed by the soil as efficiently as with direct burial. 3. or other paved areas (see Figure 4. effective sealing is very difficult to achieve in practice. Articles in the technical press have shown that a few systems are justifying using conduit for all UD installations because cable replacement is much easier. it is cable in conduit can be visualLower Cable Ampacity mostly by radiation and conized as four thermal resisvection into the air space. In northern climates. However. Thermal resistance of the conduit material. However. conduit applications will be reviewed in more detail. Laying cable in conduit is being done by many electric utilities. The concept can be more easily understood by comparing typical thermal resistivity of the various materials. Underground duct is also used to protect the cable from rodent damage. leaving air pockets. Consideration might be given to de-rating certain plowed-in cables to cable-in-conduit ratings. Thermal resistance from the jacket surface ture reached by the insulation for the typical to the inner surface of the conduit wall. Heat flow through these thermal resistances causes the temperature of the insulation to rise above ambient temperature. it is strongly recommended that conduit be used because digging trenches in frozen ground can be costly and very time-consuming. For this reason.8). conduit sizes used by utilities.000°C-cm/watt. 4. heat transfer Pros and Cons of Cable is not solely by conduction Conduit Installations in Conduit directly from the cable surThe total thermal circuit of a = face to soil. Conduit can also provide some protection against dig-ins. Once an air interface exists. Because cable in conduit has less load-carrying ability than direct-buried cable does. and soil is approximately 90. and why a cable in conduit has less ampacity. sidewalks.

ence are then applied to reduce the circuit The vent configuration needs to comply with the ampacity when a riser is present. 2. tained with an open top and a Usually. three cables can have 30 percent less ampacity than can a single cable in the same riser. Certain installations may dictate choosing a large conduit diameter to allow a higher ampacity cable to be installed later.5 summarizes the pros and cons of cable circuits in conduit. Venting method. 4. This method is NESC and good engineering judgment. The higher temperature in the riser means the rating of the composite circuit is limited by the riser segment in three-phase. which is obriser portion of a cable circuit. ment that operates at maximum temperature. direct-buried applications. Utilities that prevents natural air circulation around the usually place cable in vertical conduit for procable. When a single cable or a bundle of three JCN cables is being pulled. 1983). When three cables are placed in a single riser. Solar radiation. 3. At a conductor temperature of 90°C. the conduit must be large enough to allow unimpeded passage. mutual heating will affect cable conductor temperature. or Conduit in Air for Riser Pole Applications 3. Table 4. based on the principle that the current rating of Direct exposure of the riser to the sun will dea total cable system is limited by the cable segcrease the ampacity of a cable in a vertical riser. A vertical riser can be installed in one of three ways that will affect circuit ampacity. Number of cables in the vertical conduit. The installation configurations are listed from higher to lower ampacity values: 1. Laboratory underground direct-buried tests have shown that at a load cable runs cooler than does factor of 100 percent. If more circuits are added to an existing duct bank or trench. Another cable installation element that needs to be considered in underground applications is Proper venting will greatly increase ampacity the transition from underground to overhead at when compared with a completely closed riser a riser pole (Hartlein and Black. Closing the top reduces the convective tection.5: Pros and Cons of Installing Cable Circuits in Conduit. Pros Cable easily replaced (if not fused or frozen) Greater physical protection (for identical cables) Longer life (for identical cables) Provision for load growth (replace with larger cable) Cons Higher installed cost Lower ampacity Cable conductor temperatures in a riser application depend on the following four factors: 1. 2. . increases ampacity. Appropriate de-ratincrease ampacity between 10 and 25 percent ing factors based on field and laboratory experiwhen compared with a completely closed riser. and Riser inside diameter. engineers assume that vent at the base. It must be determined if this short secheat transfer capability from tion in a protective riser will the cable surface and inside be the limiting factor in a surface of the riser. Open at the top and vented at the bottom. Venting risers at ferred installation configuration There are no simple estabis to allow the free flow of air lished methods to rate the top and bottom through the riser. the ampacity of all circuits must be reduced. Closed at both top and bottom. Open at the top and closed at the bottom. Additional tests have shown that the heat generated by three cables in a riser will always run hotter than the direct-buried portion of the same circuit. a properly vented riser can the cable section in the riser. The inside diameter should be large enough to accommodate any movement by the cable(s) caused by thermal expansion.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 3 3 4 TABLE 4. The precable installation. The minimum conduit size required to hold one or more primary cables depends on several elements dictated by the installation.

ity application of underground primary cable on ICEA and IEEE ampacity tables for conduit-inutility systems. For maximum efficiency. and configurations shown in the shaded portion of the tables. In addition. riser material buried. peratures other than 40°C and different conducTables 4. Because ampacity tables The effect of the vertical conduit run on unlist conduit-in-air ampacity values at an ambient derground cable ampacity ratings is best shown air temperature of 40°C (104°F).6 for copper conductors and ampacity correction factors for ambient air temTable 4. midsummer (from surface to surface).7 for aluminum conductors. Conduit in Air cuits in trefoil arrangement end on a double-circuit riser pole.000 kcmil. Note that for the single-circuit. tions are shown below the ampacity values. no day throughout the United ampacity. even at an elevated ambient tem100 percent can reduce the current rating of perature of 40°C. will the same cable carrying the same current in The two tables show that. For the direct-buried conditions. Conditions that the sun’s rays and to allow heat to be given off relate to the underground and riser pole installaby the riser surface at a higher rate. singleRadiation heat transfer plays a large role in phase UD cables. and vertical conduit in should be a light color (gray) to reflect some of air for the riser pole application. Conductor sizes range from total heat dissipation from cable and riser sur4/0 AWG to 1. Because cable in conduit has less air applications are different from their underload-carrying ability than does direct-buried ground counterparts.10 as configurations 1 and 4.1 3 4 – Se c t io n 4 4 that contain up to three curIncident solar radiation per rent-carrying conductors (with unit area is equal to 900 Sun loading will neutral) are kept more than watts/m2. arrangement made up of two-conductor. use the tables for trefoil ing increases riser ampacity over the rating of a cable in isolated conduit in air. the vertiature differences between large. the riser does lows more airflow through the riser. diSubstation Exits rect-buried case. whereas ventriser pole applications. vented riser will four circuit configurations are shown in Figure consistently operate at a lower temperature than 4. The comparison is days of the summer. solar radiation was ampacity tables to select cable current ratings for found to decrease riser ampacity. to prevent . will prevent convection heating cable by 15 percent for a completely closed riser from reducing the cable ampacity. The influence of solar need be made because of muheating in a riser application tual heating. the riser limits ampacity for all Substation exits are generally the highest ampaccable sizes and for both types of conductor. This is because operating at a load factor of air circulation. for the buried cona smaller conduit because the larger opening alduit installation configurations. so that it’s comand five percent for properly vented risers beparable to that of an isolated conduit in free air. solar de-rating by comparing its ampacity with four types of factors need be applied only during the hottest underground configurations. Conductor tempercells). not limit the ampacity of the double circuit. This table can be used for riser and double three-phase circuits in trefoil pole applications. and 3 and 5. correction of ampacity ratings States. For air installations. When referring to IEEE 835-1994 for Riser Pole Applications. The Cable in a large-diameter. This is a typical decrease riser one conduit diameter apart value for a sunny. tween day and night. The cables are direct faces. both configurations applied in vertical ristables assume there is no wind and no sun loaders will be reviewed in more detail.and small-diamcal run limits the installation for the cable sizes eter risers can range from 2°C to 15°C. but the larger surface area increases heat dissipation will limit single-circuit applications (shaded by convection and radiation.1 gives shown in Table 4. buried in conduit.7 list the ampacity of single tor temperatures. Therefore. Note that Table 4. ing and that the conduit is not ventilated. When conduits riser closed at both ends.6 and 4. the cable. As Consider the condition in which two cable cirnoted in a previous subsection.

Instead. venting.10 as configurations 1 and 4. Trefoil Configuration. ampacities are listed for 40°C. or wind 2 Circuits 140 202 262 318 379 452 * Ampacity values are from IEEE Standard 835-1994. Copper Conductor.6: Ampacity Values—15-kV Cable. the de-rating of riser pole (conduit-in-air) ampacity values resulting from solar effects. The tables also do not show am- . ** Circuit configurations are shown in Figure 4.* Direct Buried** Cable Size 4/0 350 500 750 1. ** The above circuit configurations are shown in Figure 4.000 1 Circuit 360 460 535 608 706 Underground 90°C conductor temperature 100% load factor 25°C ambient earth temperature 2 Circuits 301 381 440 496 573 Riser Pole Vertical Conduit in Air 267 338 409 455 554 Buried in Conduit** 1 Circuit 289 370 439 502 599 Riser Pole 90°C conductor temperature 40°C average air temperature No solar radiation. respectively. Aluminum Conductor.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 3 5 4 TABLE 4. and 3 and 5. TABLE 4.7: Ampacity Values—15-kV Cable. or wind 2 Circuits 256 326 383 434 512 * Ampacity values are from IEEE Standard 835-1994. Trefoil Configuration. respectively. and 3 and 5. the riser must be open at the top and vented at the bottom. venting.10 as configurations 1 and 4. Conduit-in-air ampacity tables do not list dif- ferent current values for different average air temperatures.* Direct Buried** Cable Size 1/0 4/0 350 500 750 1000 1 Circuit 195 284 370 442 529 623 Underground 90°C conductor temperature 100% load factor 25°C ambient earth temperature 2 Circuits 165 238 307 365 432 506 Riser Pole Vertical Conduit in Air 145 212 276 347 411 508 Buried in Conduit** 1 Circuit 156 228 298 364 437 528 Riser Pole 90°C conductor temperature 40°C average air temperature No solar radiation. which is considered conservative for most installations.

It is used to cover and are more subject to damage by provide suitable protection for outside impact. and consider as well the maximum operating temperature rating of cable terminations and joints. some utilities use pacity. ular impact. This instalchimney-cooling effect. if any.1 3 6 – Se c t io n 4 4 pacity variations caused by different load factors This added feature is particularly important if a for cables suspended in conduit exposed to air. U-guard. it be installed only the base because an air space is recommended that a 90° is assumed to exist between elbow with a separate end where necessary for the pole and flanges to allow bell be installed three feet increased ampacity. for riser applications. the cable. cables have been rated for operation at a maximum temperature of 90°C. Cooperatives should weigh carefully the use of this rating. it is required to obtain sufficient cable circuit amInstead of circular conduit. as U-guard should be placed on opposite sides of the load increases to a peak. Thus. This is because the venting fixtures are more U-guard for riser pole applications. When these type cables are loaded above a conductor operating temperature of 90°C for XLPE. significant air gaps no heat-sink cooling effect for the conductor/air (see Figure 4. After the cable is installed. the conductor temthe pole to prevent mutual heating and minimize perature increases much more quickly than if it the chance of simultaneous damage from vehicwere buried in soil. as expensive than normal conduit and require addithe name implies.9: Single-Phase U-Guard Installation with Vented Base. enough air entry to produce a below grade level. Regardless of whether the riser is conduit or because the thermal time constant for the U-guard. U-guard usually Whether conduit or URiser vents should does not need to be vented at guard is used as a riser. pulling. Emergency Overload Ratings For years. the cable is considered overloaded. For a double-circuit riser pole. many cooperatives install cable is at the proper depth a vent at the base of U-guard to ensure optimum near the riser pole.9). The elbow/bell end combiairflow and increased cable ampacity for all nation helps prevent cable damage during three-phase and most single-phase installations. Overloading the cable will heat its insulation above its maximum operating temperature limits. is a U-shaped section with tional installation effort. Many utilities and cable manufacturers are now specifying and rating cables for 105°C as a standard overload temperature. TR-XLPE. venting should only be installed where cable/air system is very short. In a riser. . Emergency FIGURE 4. it also helps protect against dig-ins around the base of the pole and minimizes conduit pressures on cable if soil shifts. and EPR insulations. Howlation will ensure that the ever. Venting fixtures also slightflanged edges that is attached to a pole with lag ly reduce the security of the riser installation and bolts. The insulation temperature limits have been set by standards to maintain the integrity of the insulation for an increased life expectancy. system as exists for buried cable. because this There is no load factor variation because there is arrangement has few. U-guard backing plate is used. the load factor is considered to be 100 percent.

operating temperature limits apply only to the infrequent higher loading of a line caused by an unplanned outage of a nearby cable or load sharing for a nearby substation. 15 kV. Load factors of 75 percent and 100 percent.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 3 7 4 TABLE 4. • Conductors I Class B Stranding I Copper and Aluminum I 1/3 Concentric Neutral (1/6 for 1.. Installation configurations are shown in Figure 4. AMPACITY TABLES Table 4. Insulation Thermosetting TR-XLPE and EPR Thermosetting TR-XLPE and EPR HMWPE Normal Operating Temperature (°C) 105 90 75 Emergency-Load Temperature (°C) 140* 130* 95 Short-Circuit Temperature of Cable Conductor (less than 30 seconds) (°C) 250 250 150 * Operation at the emergency overload temperature of 130°C (266°F) and 140°C (284°F) shall not exceed 100 hours in any 12 consecutive months nor more than 500 hours during the lifetime of the cable. Lower temperatures for emergency overload conditions may be required because of other types of material used in the cable and in the joints and terminations or because of cable environmental conditions. Note. as per the National Electrical Safety Code. 25 kV. For these reasons. concentric neutral. primary UD cables. The three-phase ampacity tables and associated ampacity ratings for underground distribution cables provided in Appendix G are based on the following conditions: • • • • 60-Hz.8: Abstract of ICEA Standards for Maximum Emergency-Load and Short-Circuit-Load Temperatures for Various Insulations.000 kcmil) • Conductor Sizes I 1/0 AWG Solid Conductor—Aluminum Only—Full Neutral I 4/0 AWG Class B Stranding—Copper and Aluminum I 350 kcmil Class B Stranding—Copper and Aluminum I 500 kcmil Class B Stranding—Copper and Aluminum I 750 kcmil Class B Stranding—Copper and Aluminum I 1. two-conductor. .10.8 lists the emergency overload temperatures for the two types of insulation specified by the RUS. Table 4.1 lists the ampacities for single-phase UD cable direct buried and in conduit for copper and aluminum conductors. plus temperatures for outdated HMWPE when used as an insulation material. NEMA. single-phase. Cable aging accelerates with high temperatures and accumulates over time in a way similar to aging in transformers. Emergency overload ratings are set by ICEA. and 35 kV. 1989). and ANSI/IEEE standards. emergency overload ratings always specify both a temperature and a time limit for events over the lifetime of the cable (Aluminum Association Inc. The ratings have been derived from industry operating experience and could change as newer and better insulation materials become available. Three. Standards state that the emergency overload conductor temperature of 130°C (or 140°C for the 105°C rating) should not be exceeded for more than 100 hours in any 12 consecutive months nor for more than 500 hours during the lifetime of the cable.000 kcmil Class B Stranding—Copper and Aluminum • Cable Specification I To Meet RUS Cable Specification 1728F-U1: N Insulation: EPR or TR-XLPE N Insulating Outer Jacket N Insulation Thickness: 220 mil @ 15 kV 260 mil @ 25 kV 345 mil @ 35 kV • All concentric neutrals are shorted and grounded at several points in the circuit.

• Ratings include dielectric loss and induced ac losses. To correct ampacities based on maximum conductor temperatures for different ambient temperatures.5” 19” 30” Configuration 5 Configuration 6 36” 5” 7.5” 7. Adjustment for Changes in Ambient Soil Temperature The ampacities in Appendix G are based on an ambient temperature of 25°C. • Temperature Limitations I Ambient Soil = 25°C I Conductor = 90°C I Neutral (assumed) = 80°C I Conduit (assumed) = 70°C • Thermal resistivity (rho) of various materials was assumed as follows: I Soil = 90°C-cm/Watt I Insulation and Extruded Shields = 400°C-cm/Watt I Conduit and Duct = 480°C-cm/Watt I Concrete = 85°C-cm/Watt 19” 18” 30” • The ampacities for 15-kV class cable were calculated with 15 kV as the operating voltage. Adjustments for Changes in Parameters If the engineer needs to make certain changes in parameters to match them with actual site conditions or to do a sensitivity analysis on various parameters.5” 18” 36” Configuration 7 5” 7. and 7 is Schedule 40.9 may be used .5” 19”  26.5” Duct Bank 7. the ampacities will be marginally higher (<1%). • Conduit I Conduit used in Configurations No.5” 7.3. 6.5” 26. 5. 3. Maximum fill requirements are 40 percent for three cables in a conduit per pending RUS Specification 1728F-U1. the following formulas may be used. PVC conduit. use the formula shown in Equation 4. If 12.47 kV is used.10: Three-Phase Cable Installation Configurations.1 3 8 – Se c t io n 4 4 Configuration 1 Configuration 2 Configuration 3 Configuration 4 36” 36” 36” A B C 7. The factors shown in Table 4.5” 19” 19”  19” Duct Bank FIGURE 4.

Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 3 9

to correct ampacities based on maximum conductor temperatures for earth ambient temperatures of 20°C or 30°C.

Adjustment for Changes in Ambient Air Temperature To find ampacities for ambient air temperatures other than those found in the individual tables, multiply table values by the correction factors shown in Table 4.10.
Equation 4.3 I' = where: Tc I Ta' I' = = = = Tc – Ta' ×I Tc – 25

Maximum conductor temperature from ampacity table Ampacity shown for Tc at ambient earth temperature of 25°C New ambient earth temperature Adjusted ampacity for ambient earth temperature Ta'

TABLE 4.9: Correction Factors to Convert from 25°C Ambient Soil Temperature to 20°C and 30°C.
Ambient Temperature (°C) Correction Factor (Maximum Conductor Temperature) 75°C 20 30 1.049 0.949 90°C 1.037 0.960

TABLE 4.10: Correction Factors for Various Ambient Air Temperatures. Source: Okonite Company, Engineering Data for Copper and Aluminum Conductor Electrical Cables, Bulletin EHB-90, 1990.
Conductor Temperature (°C) 30°C 75 85 90 100 110 125 130 150 0.97 1.06 1.10 1.17 1.23 1.31 1.33 1.42

Adjustment for Change in Conductor Temperature The ampacities (I') for conductor temperatures other than those included in the tables (e.g., emergency conductor temperatures) can be approximated using the formula in Equation 4.4. When Tc' is greater than Tc, Equation 4.4 will give conservative values because it is based on the ratio of direct-current losses at the two temperatures, whereas the ratio of the ac conductor and concentric neutral losses to dc conductor losses decreases with increasing conductor temperature. For example, the ampacity at 110°C conductor temperature may be as much as five percent higher and at 130°C as much as 10 percent higher than values calculated from Equation 4.4. Deviations from true ampacities will depend on the conductor size, concentric neutral size, and installation configuration. Equation 4.4 is more precise for smaller conductors and higher resistance concentric neutrals (ICEA P-53-426, p. VII, May 1976). Figure 4.10 shows the seven cable installation configurations whose ampacities have been listed in the ampacity tables. Note: The ampacities listed in Appendix G are based on a conductor temperature of 90°C and an ambient soil temperature of 25°C. On the basis of these assumptions, many of the calculated current values may exceed the maximum permissible earth interface temperatures for various types of soils. Experience has shown that interface temperatures of 50°C and 60°C should be

Equation 4.4
Ambient Air Temperature 35°C 0.92 1.01 1.05 1.12 1.19 1.27 1.30 1.39 40°C 0.86 0.96 1.00 1.08 1.15 1.24 1.27 1.36 45°C 0.79 0.90 0.95 1.03 1.11 1.20 1.23 1.33 50°C 0.72 0.84 0.89 0.98 1.06 1.16 1.19 1.30

I' =

Tc' – Ta τc + Tc ×I × Tc – Ta τc + Tc'

where: I' = Ampacity for conductor temperature Tc, in amperes Tc' = New or emergency conductor temperature, in °C Ta = Ambient earth temperature, in °C τc = Magnitude of the difference between 0°C and the zero electrical resistance of copper (234.5°C) or aluminum (228.1°C) Tc = Maximum conductor temperature from ampacity table, in °C

1 4 0 – Se c t io n 4

satisfactory for many types of soils. Unless the soil properties and moisture content of a particular installation are known, ampacity values should be chosen from the “Amperes at 60°C” columns, rather than those from the “Amperes” columns. The three following examples illustrate the concepts covered in this section. EXAMPLE 4.2: Single-Phase UD Cable Ampacities. A cooperative is planning to stock UD cable to meet the growing demand for new 12.47-kV underground installations. This cable will be used with 200-ampere class accessories. The cable will also be used to replace any faulted feeder sections on an as-needed basis. The conductor cable with the most installed circuit miles on the system is 1/0 aluminum. With this in mind, the engineer decided to check the ampacity of 1/0 cable for typical installations that exist on the system to find which cable sections could limit the current rating of an entire cable run. The cooperative direct buries its single-phase cable in all instances except for road crossings and riser pole installations. Go to the beginning of this section to find the ampacity rating for underground installations. Assume an operating conductor temperature of 90°C, soil rho = 90°C-cm/watt, and ambient soil temperature of 20°C. Using Table 4.1, find the ampacity of direct-buried TR-XLPE 1/0 aluminum cable: Ampacity = 264 amperes at 100% load factor As most single-phase circuits do not operate at 100 percent load factor, determine the cable rating at 75 percent and 50 percent load factor using the correction factors contained in Table 4.1: 75% LF = 1.08 × 264 = 285 amperes 50% LF = 1.16 × 264 = 306 amperes The cooperative’s standard installation practice for road crossings is to pull cable through conduit to speed cable change out if it fails. From Table 4.1, the cable rating in direct-buried conduit is as follows: 156 amperes at 100% LF 162 amperes at 75% LF (1.04 × 156) 167 amperes at 50% LF (1.07 × 156) It is assumed that the under-road section is long enough so there is no additional cooling effect from the direct-buried cable on either side of the road. Because the ampacity ratings given in Table 4.1 are for an ambient soil temperature of 25°C, higher values can be expected if the soil temperature is actually 20°C. As Equation 4.3 indicates, the cable ampacity at 20°C can be found by multiplying the existing values by the correction factor: 90 – 20 = 1.0377 90 – 25 Cable ampacity for a soil temperature of 20°C is as follows:
Load Factor 100% 75% 50% Direct Buried 274 298 318 In Duct 162 168 173

For the riser pole cable section, the ampacity value is found in Table 4.1 under the “Duct in Air” column: Ampacity = 120 amperes at 40°C ambient and 100% LF This ampacity value is based on a riser that is closed at the top and bottom with no sun loading and no wind. Previous discussions have shown that venting conduit at top and bottom and leaving the top of U-guard open can increase riser ampacity, whereas solar radiation can reduce its rating. So if sun loading is considered, the riser must be properly vented or a de-rating factor should be applied to the 120-ampere riser rating. Note that solar de-rating will be a factor only for summer loading and when the temperature exceeds 100°F. This analysis shows that the riser pole limits the rating of the total underground circuit. At 100 percent load factor and 20°C ambient soil, direct-buried 1/0 cable ampacity of 274 amperes would be reduced by 57 percent and the 162-ampere rating of cable in duct would be reduced by 26 percent.

Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 4 1

EXAMPLE 4.3: Emergency Overload Rating Cable in Protective Riser. From previous load studies and demand measurements, the engineer knows that the load factor on his heavily loaded loop-feed circuits has never exceeded 75 percent. Given this fact, determine the emergency overload rating of the cable in the protective riser. The conditions necessary to produce maximum current at a riser include a loop-feed installation with the open point near the center of the loop and a cable failure near the opposite riser pole. These conditions are relatively rare and represent an emergency situation that should last for only a short time. From Table 4.10, the conduit-in-air correction factor for an emergency overload conductor temperature of 130°C is 1.27 for an ambient air temperature of 40°C. Therefore, Emergency Riser Rating = 1.27 × 120 = 152 amperes Because the cable is in a riser, no ampacity increase is allowed for 75 percent load factor. Comparing this value with the 75 percent load factor ampacity of the direct-buried and buried duct sections of the cable run shows the duct portion is overloaded by 10 percent and the directburied sections are well within their ratings. Note that, for simple radial feed circuits, the 90°C conductor ampacity rating of a riser should never be exceeded.

EXAMPLE 4.4: Three-Phase Substation Exit Ampacity. The same cooperative from Example 4.2 is planning to install a new 12/16/20-MVA transformer in an existing substation. The addition is needed to support expected load growth in the area and will replace an existing overloaded transformer. Four 12.47-kV feeders will be needed. A 600-ampere recloser will protect each feeder. Because of congestion around the substation, four underground circuit exits that will terminate on two double-circuit riser poles are planned. The cable for each underground exit must be sized to carry, under emergency ratings, the full load of one other circuit in case of a cable failure. Find the appropriate size cable for the application. Assume two three-phase circuits to a riser pole will be installed in two separate trenches. Each of the circuits to a given riser pole will provide emergency backup for the other. Each circuit will be in a single conduit in trefoil configuration, similar to configuration 3 of Figure 4.10. Maximum conductor temperature will be limited to 90°C, soil thermal resistivity (rho) will be 90°C-cm/watt, and load factor will be 75 percent. Maximum feeder loading assuming balanced feeders is approximately 260 amperes. For the contingency condition of a failed cable, the maximum short-time loading would be as follows: 2 × 260 = 520 amperes The smallest cable size to meet the emergency overload current can be found by first calculating the emergency correction factor for a conductor temperature of 130°C from Equation 4.4,

For aluminum conductor, I'130 = 130 – 25 228.1 + 90 × I90 = 1.198 × I90 × 90 – 25 228.1 + 130

For copper conductor, I'130 = 130 – 25 234.5 + 90 × I90 = 1.199 × I90 × 90 – 25 234.5 + 130

Find a copper or aluminum cable from the ampacity tables in Appendix G for configuration 3 (single direct-buried conduit with three conductors) whose 90°C, 75 percent load factor rating when multiplied by 1.2 gives a value approximating 520 amperes (520 ÷ 1.2 = 433 amperes). Cable ampacity ratings at 130°C conductor temperature are as follows:
For Copper 500 kcmil 439 × 1.2 = 527 amperes For Aluminum 750 kcmil 437 × 1.2 = 524 amperes


1 4 2 – Se c t io n 4

EXAMPLE 4.4: Three-Phase Substation Exit Ampacity. (cont.) The emergency rating of both cables is greater than the 520-ampere emergency requirement. Even if the two conduits had been installed within 18” of each other (Configuration 5), the single circuit in a trench ampacity table is the correct configuration to use in this instance because only one circuit will be energized during the emergency condition. Next, the riser pole current rating should be checked to see if it will limit the cable application. From Tables 4.6 and 4.7, the corresponding riser pole ratings are 409 amperes for copper and 411 amperes for aluminum. Both values are less than their respective buried conduit ratings (439 copper and 437 aluminum). The riser cable 130°C emergency overload rating at 40°C ambient air temperature can be found from Table 4.10. 500 kcmil copper = 1.27 × 411 = 522 amperes 750 kcmil aluminum = 1.27 × 409 = 520 amperes Because the riser emergency rating is less than the buried conduit emergency rating, the riser cable section is the limiting element in the application. The application is a valid emergency situation if it is understood the overload condition will not exceed 100 hours in any 12-month period or 500 hours over the planned life of the installation. This substation exit application is covered by standards because it is an unplanned outage of a nearby cable. Note that the riser must be open at the top and vented at the bottom to provide additional ampacity above the values given in the tables and to compensate for any de-rating caused by solar heating.

• Ambient soil temperature, SECONDARY CABLE AMPACITY and Secondary cables carry power Primary and secondary • Installation configuration: at utilization voltage level from cable ampacities are I Direct buried the pad-mounted distribution I In duct. transformer low-voltage termiaffected by the nals to the service entrance The appropriate secondary same conditions. point for each consumer. The cable size is selected based on many conditions that affect the the amount of load the cable ampacity of primary cable also will serve. In a later subsection apply to secondary cable installations. Among titled Transformer Sizing for Single-Phase Transthese conditions are the following: formers for New Residential Loads, a procedure is • • • • Equation 4.5 Single-Phase: I1φ = Three-Phase: I3φ = where: kVA1φ kVA3φ kVL-L I1φ I3φ = = = = = kVA1φ kVL-L kVA3φ 3 kVL-L Maximum insulation operating temperature, Conductor resistance, Load factor, Soil thermal resistivity, outlined to determine the appropriate transformer size on the basis of the number of connected loads and the diversified demands of each load. Once the expected load and secondary operating voltage are known, the required ampacity for balanced loads can be determined from Equation 4.5. Once the secondary current load is calculated from Equation 4.5, ampacity tables can be consulted to select the proper cable size. Table 4.11 gives the allowable thermal loading for the most common secondary cable sizes in a buried environment for 100 percent load factor, 90°C maximum conductor temperature, 20°C ambient soil temperature, and 90°C-cm/watt soil thermal resistivity. After a secondary cable size is selected from ampacity tables, the application must be checked to ensure that voltage drop and flicker are within acceptable limits. These calculations are covered in detail in Appendix B.

Total load for single-phase applications Total load for three-phase applications Voltage line-to-line, in thousands of volts Single-phase current, in amperes Three-phase current, in amperes

Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 4 3

TABLE 4.11: Typical Ampacities for Various Sizes and Types of 600-Volt Secondary UD Cable—Stranded Aluminum Conductors.
Phase Conductors Size (AWG or kcmil) Insul. Thick. (mils) Size (AWG or kcmil) Neutral Insul. Thick. (mils) Dimensions (mils) SinglePhase Cond. Complete Cable Wt. per 1,000 ft (lb.) Ampacity (amps)* Direct Burial In Buried Conduit Code Word Strand Strand. DUPLEX Bard Claflin Delgado 8 6 4 7 7 7 60 60 60 8 6 4 7 7 7 TRIPLEX Vassar Stephens Ramapo Brenau Bergen Converse Hunter Hollins Rockland Sweetbriar Monmouth Pratt Wesleyan Holyoke Rider 4 2 2 1/0 1/0 2/0 2/0 3/0 3/0 4/0 4/0 250 350 500 500 7 7 7 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 37 37 37 37 60 60 60 80 80 80 80 80 80 80 80 95 95 95 95 4 4 2 2 1/0 1 2/0 1/0 3/0 2/0 4/0 3/0 4/0 300 350 7 7 7 7 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 37 37 60 60 60 60 80 80 80 80 80 80 80 80 80 95 95 345 403 403 512 512 555 555 603 603 658 658 732 831 956 956 745 870 870 1,106 1,106 1,199 1,199 1,302 1,302 1,421 1,421 1,581 1,795 2,065 2,069 191 249 278 387 441 478 535 581 651 709 796 853 1,118 1,544 1,597 125 165 165 215 215 245 245 280 280 315 315 345 415 495 495 90 120 120 160 160 180 180 205 205 240 240 265 320 395 395 60 60 60 262 299 345 524 598 690 76 104 138 70 95 125 55 70 90

QUADRAPLEX Tulsa Dyke Wittenberg Notre Dame Purdue Syracuse Lafayette 4 2 2 1/0 1/0 2/0 2/0 7 7 7 19 19 19 19 60 60 60 80 80 80 80 4 4 2 2 1/0 1 2/0 7 7 7 7 19 19 19 60 60 60 80 80 80 80 345 403 403 512 512 555 555 833 973 973 1,236 1,236 1,340 1,340 255 342 371 534 589 657 713 120 155 155 200 200 225 225 85 115 115 150 150 170 170


1 4 4 – Se c t io n 4

TABLE 4.11: Typical Ampacities for Various Sizes and Types of 600-Volt Secondary UD Cable—Stranded Aluminum Conductors. (cont.)
Phase Conductors Size (AWG or kcmil) Insul. Thick. (mils) Size (AWG or kcmil) Neutral Insul. Thick. (mils) Dimensions (mils) SinglePhase Cond. Complete Cable Wt. per 1,000 ft (lb.) Ampacity (amps)* Direct Burial In Buried Conduit Code Word Strand Strand. QUADRAPLEX (cont.) Swarthmore Davidson Wake Forest Earlham Slippery Rock 3/0 3/0 4/0 4/0 350 19 19 19 19 37 80 80 80 80 95 1/0 3/0 2/0 4/0 4/0 19 19 19 19 19 80 80 80 80 80 603 603 658 658 831 1,456 1,456 1,588 1,588 2,006 798 868 974 1,061 1,544 250 250 290 290 385 195 195 225 225 305

*Ampacity: 90°C conductor temperature, 20°C ambient temperature, rho 90, 100% load factor Note. Excerpted from Southwire Product Catalog, Section 16, pages 2, 3, and 4, 2003.

Pad-Mounted Transformer Sizing

PAD-MOUNTED TRANSFORMERS LOADING FOR NORMAL LIFE EXPECTANCY The distribution transformer is an essential comIn service, a transformer is not loaded continuponent of the underground distribution system. ously at rated kVA and at a constant temperature. Besides providing transformation from primary Instead, it goes through a daily load cycle with a to secondary voltages, it provides an area for short-time peak load occurring usually during the primary and secondary cable terminations, hottest part of the day. A varying load poses switching and surge protection equipment, and challenges in optimizing a transformer’s full-load overcurrent protective devices, all housed within capability without shortening its useful life. The the transformer enclosure. Because of increased capability of pad-mounted distribution transformUD usage, special pad-mounted distribution ers to carry loads under conditions other than transformers were developed with the above those used to establish nameplate ratings will be features. The term pad comes from the transreviewed later in this section. Because loading formers usually being located guides are based on the averon concrete slabs or pads age winding temperature rise (Fink and Beaty, 1987). above ambient, the load-carryLoading considerations Figure 4.11 shows a typical ing ability of a pole-type transfor pole- and padsingle-phase, pad-mounted former is basically the same as transformer with its cover that of a pad-mounted transmounted transformers open. Two primary bushing former. Standards make no are the same. wells are shown at the upper distinction between the two. left for use with load-break elAdditional information on bows. This dead-front configuloading distribution transformration allows a low-height design to be used in ers can be found in ANSI/IEEE Standard C57.91. residential areas and provides greater safety for Standards assign a distribution transformer a operating personnel. The secondary 240/120rated output that is expressed in kVA. The transvolt bushings with copper studs are shown on former is designed to carry this rated load continthe right. uously over its expected lifetime at an ambient

Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 4 5

on the ability to transfer internal heat to the atmosphere. The capability of the cooling system to rid the transformer of heat depends mainly on the temperature differential between the tank and the ambient air because most pad-mounted transformers do not have forced-air cooling. The ambient air temperature is the most important element in determining how much load a transformer can carry because the temperature rise of the insulation for any load is added to the ambient temperature to determine the actual operating temperature of the transformer. To select daily peak loads from published loading guides, the engineer must predict what the temperature will be during the peaks. The probable ambient temperature for any future month can be estimated from historical weather data from the cooperative’s service area. ANSI/IEEE C57.91 gives two methods to predict temperature for the month involved. One is used to select loads for normal life expectancy and uses average daily temperature (defined as the average of all daily highs and all daily lows) for the month, averaged for several years. The other uses the maximum daily temperature (defined by the standard as the average of the high and low of the hottest day) for the chosen month, averaged over many years. Whenever these two methods are used, it is understood that, during any one day, the maximum temperature may exceed the average values found above. To be conservative, these FIGURE 4.11: Typical Dead-Front, Single-Phase, Pad-Mounted temperatures should be increased by 5°C beTransformer cause insulation does not recover fully after it is overheated. The maximum temperature over a 24-hour period should not exceed the average temperature of 30°C (86°F), without exceeding temperature by more than an average winding tempera10°C, which provides an adeture rise of 65°C. Under these quate safety margin. According conditions, insulation deterioAmbient temperature to the above factors, the estiration and transformer loss of mated temperature should not life are considered normal. Inand load factor set be exceeded for more than a dustry experience has shown transformer loading. few days per month; however, that normal life expectancy if it is, the transformer will not under these conditions should be adversely affected by the be at least 20 years. small incremental loss of life. Heat gain within a transformer is caused by Standard loading tables give ambient temperano-load and winding losses. Keeping the tempertures in 10°C intervals. Estimating peak loads ature rise of the windings below 65°C depends

1 4 6 – Se c t io n 4

EXAMPLE 4.5: Average Daily Temperature Selection for a Summer-Peaking Utility. The procedure to select the average daily temperature for loading distribution transformers is shown in this example. ABC Cooperative is located in the Southeast. As part of an operations review process, the manager and engineer decided to establish a formal procedure to select the proper size pad-mounted distribution transformers for an expected surge in underground installations in its service area. TABLE 4.12: Average Temperatures for July and August Averaged for the Previous 10 Years.
Month July August Average of Temperatures Average (°F) 80.6 81.0 80.8 Average (°C) 27.0 27.2 27.1

The first step in determining the maximum load each transformer can carry is to select an approximate ambient temperature that would be expected on the peak day. This summer peaking cooperative obtained the average July and August temperatures for the previous 10 years from the Weather Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Table 4.12 averages the temperatures found. Adding 5°C to the average, as recommended by ANSI/ IEEE C57.91, gives 27.1°C + 5°C = 32.1°C, which normally should be used for any transformer loading studies. The standard also specifies that the maximum temperature over a 24-hour period should not exceed the

average temperature selected by more than 10°C. Thus, the maximum temperature should not exceed 27.1°C + 10°C = 37.1°C (98.8°F). However, the engineer found that, in the hot summer of 1987, on many days the temperature reached 100°F (37.8°C) or more. If an actual maximum daily temperature in recent memory has been greater than 10°C above the maximum temperature averaged for the previous 10 years, it is suggested that that higher temperature be used in your calculations. To allow for the probability of 100°F days occurring, the engineer increased the 32.1°C average temperature selected previously by 0.7°C—the difference between the calculated plus-10°C maximum (37.1°C) and the actual high temperature (37.8°C)—thus using 32.8°C as the temperature to be used in the study.

Other items that can affect between the given temperapad-mounted transformer tures in a table is allowed. Altitude, tank finish, cooling are altitude and tank Peak loads obtained in this and ventilation affect finish. At higher altitudes, the way are accurate enough for air is not as dense; this dethe ambient temperatures depad-mounted creases cooling efficiency. rived from the above example. transformer cooling. Above 3,300 feet, a transHowever, extrapolation beyond former kVA rating should be the range of values shown in reduced approximately 0.4 the tables is not recommended. percent for each 330 feet of additional altitude. The engineer can perform the same type of The ability of a transformer to radiate heat is ambient temperature analysis for winter months affected by its paint finish. Some metal flake if the transformers are experiencing winter paints, like aluminum, reflect heat from direct peaks. The standard does not deal with the elecsunlight quite effectively; however, they do not tric heating load that will be greatest during the allow heat to escape as efficiently. Because most coldest days of the month, so results will be transformer heat is produced internally, metalconservative. When the ambient temperature based paints actually increase the temperature study produces a result below 0°C, the loading rise in most instances (Lee 1973). The subject of limits from the 0°C columns should be used inpaint finish is mentioned only in connection stead of extrapolation.

Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 4 7

lasting from a few minutes to a few hours. A similar cycle is repeated every 24 hours. This characteristic allows the transformer to be operated at loads exceeding its continuous kVA rating during short peaks. Two main characteristics of the transformer permit the overload to be carried without decreasing normal life expectancy. The first characteristic is the thermal time constant, which ensures that the internal oil temperature increases slowly after a rapid change in load. This fact is important because of the limitation that the winding hot-spot temperaLOAD CHARACTERISTICS ture places on the ability of the The normal load duration transformer to carry an overload curve of a typical padShort peak overloads without insulation damage. For mounted transformer with a step change in load, the conmore than one service concan be carried ductor temperature at the hottest nected to it consists of a relawithout loss of spot in the winding increases to tively low load during most of transformer life. its maximum value very quickthe day, with one peak load ly. However, hot-spot and total conductor temperature are held down until the thermal time constant is exceed150 ed, which could be three to 10 hours, depending 140% Peak Load on preload conditions. Pad-mounted transformers are now designed to operate continuously at 70% Initial Load 100 a winding hot-spot temperature of 110°C. The second characteristic is the thermal aging of transformer insulation. Hot-spot temperatures 1 Hour 50 above 110°C can be carried for short times withActual Load out shortening the expected life of the transformer, as long as they are followed by longer 0 12 6 12 6 12 periods of operation below 110°C. Elevated temAM PM Time (Hours) peratures do not cause insulation failure, but only increase the rate of its deterioration when FIGURE 4.12: Actual Load Cycle and Equivalent Load Cycle. they are prolonged. It follows that a pad-mounted transformer lightly loaded before a peak will have a lower hot-spot 150 temperature than one carrying full load before 137% Peak Load the same peak. Therefore, the shape of the load curve over a 24-hour period can greatly affect Transformer Rating 100 what peak load may be carried by a transformer. If a daily load duration curve for a single 50% Initial Load transformer was plotted from data collected by 50 an interval demand recorder, it would be similar 2 Hours to the curve in Figure 4.12. To use loading guides provided in the stan0 12 6 12 6 12 dard, change the actual load duration curve into AM PM Time (Hours) a thermally equivalent, simple rectangular load cycle as shown in Figure 4.13. FIGURE 4.13: Thermal Equivalent Load Cycle.
Load as Percentage of Transformer Rating Load as Percentage of Transformer Rating

with refinishing transformers in the field. The engineer should be careful that the paint selected is a standard pad-mounted transformer finish with good radiating properties. Proper ventilation should always be considered when siting a pad-mounted transformer and after installation to allow the cooling system to function at peak efficiency. Care should be taken to allow for air to circulate freely around the unit at all times.

Peak loads shown assume 0.74 1.07 40 1. Caution conditions when should be used to not overesloading transformers.6 illustrates t1 + t2 + t3 + .07 40 1.08 40 1.29 L12 + L22 + L32 + .12 1. page 20. L2.39 2. ANSI/IEEE C57.L 2 t L1 1 2 2 3 3 n n Equivalent Peak Load = percentage of peak load.91-1981.02 1.50 1.55 1.30 1.43 1.62 1.05 0. timate on-peak time.56 1. .06 1.12 1. or current cold-climate areas. Loading for Normal Life Expectancy.7 shows the formula for the equivalent peak load. The ambient temperature to use in the 1-hour interval of the 12-hour period loading guide is the average daily temperature preceding the peak transformer load determined using the procedure outlined in a previous subsection.0137% per day loss of life for normal life expectancy.18 30 2.79 1.57 1.. = Average load by inspection for each pectancy.38 1.82 1.17 30 1.57 1.50 1.6 and 4.21 1.35 10 2.26 1.09 0.28 1. If the duration is overestimated.96 1. the rms peak load may be far below the maximum peak demand. After the equivalent peak load has been determined.13 0. with the maximum temperature not exceeding the average temperature by more than 10°C.16 30 1.94 1..79 1.53 1.82 1.96 0. actual kVA. that might apply for winter-peaking studies in per unit.36 1.6 Table 4. a maximum loading above t1.03 1.25 1.25 1. Equation 4. It can also be used to determine whether or not an exEquivalent Initial Load = 0.13: Daily Peak Loads Per Unit of Nameplate Rating for Self-Cooled Oil-Immersed Transformers to Give Minimum 20-Year Life Expectancy.44 1. etc.97 50 1.13 1.7 The preload level given in the tables is based on the transformer nameplate rating and is not a 2 t + L 2 t + L 2 t + .36 1.52 2.87 1.13—may be used to pick a transformer size to supply the expected daily loading.48 1.72 1.61 1. Peak Load Time in Hours 1 2 4 8 24 Continuous Equivalent Load as Percentage of Rated kVA Preceding Peak Load 50% 75% 90% Ambient (°C) Ambient (°C) Ambient (°C) 0 2.91-1981)..91 1..36 10 2.7 (ANSI/IEEE C57.73 1.00 1.26 1.26 1. For transformer operation above 50°C or below 0°C.27 20 2.77 1.18 0. = The various load steps as a percentage. .36 10 2.44 1.82 1.15 1. a loading guide—such as the one in Equation 4.26 20 2.68 1. TABLE 4.31 2..86 0 2. .95 Note. contact manufacturer. t2.16 1. These values may be approximated by the formulas shown in Equations 4. L2.27 20 2.33 1.96 1. .97 50 1. .40 2.66 1. Equation 4.65 1.46 1.84 0 2.02 0. L122 isting transformer will supply the listed daily peak loads and a 20-year minimum life exwhere: L1.. .26 1.39 1. = Respective durations of these loads This conversion is done by deriving the values for the initial load and the peak load. The ambient temperature to use in the table is the average temperature over a 24-hour period.1 4 8 – Se c t io n 4 4 Estimating the duration of the peak has considerable inConsider preload fluence over the rms magnitude of the peak load.77 1. . Example this principle.50 1.52 1. Note that even under 0°C ambient conditions where: L1. Excerpted from Table 5.49 1.

its life expectancy is being shortened and excessive conductor losses will be increasing operating costs. Table 4. but. investigation curately reflect conditions in other climates. cause the load-estimating procedure analysis shows that some of the very large perto become somewhat complicated. However.91-1995.00-2000. transformer and select the corservice area.6: Selection of Maximun Permissible Transformer Per-Unit Loading. from Chart 1.91-1981. load. and C57.5 × 1.9 of the transformer nameplate rating. pad-mounted transformer. This ances used. internal connections.2.1. for small transformloads. the air conditioning efficiencies in your Loading levels applied to transformers should area may differ from those used in the developbe kept within those of Standard C57. they should not be continued for a sustained period of time. These conditions can be allowed during emergencies. This coorto determine the number of dinated design is noted in consumers connected to the for your particular ANSI/IEEE C57.68 pu figure shown under the 75 percent preload conditions. many varying circumstances. responding diversity factors Section 8. it should not be higher than the 1. and demands are different for every utilers. the engineer can estimate a final result of 1. Also. However. under most conditions. TRANSFORMER SIZING FOR SINGLE-PHASE TRANSFORMERS FOR NEW RESIDENTIAL LOADS Transformer loading is further complicated because loading levels are difficult to estimate for transformers serving residential consumers. and two-hour peak duration is 1. The NRECA Loss Management Manual thoroughly covers the issue of loss-optimal loading of distribution transformers. The first step is guide developed C57. In fact. This change shifts the preload level to about 79 percent.63 pu loading. the resistance could exceed the price of the transformer. This maximum exists because the 90 persuch as the sizes and types of electrical applicent preload level is the largest tabulated. The table is included as an Doing so protects not only the transformer example to demonstrate that similar tables windings but also ancillary components on the would be useful or can be developed from martransformer. For example. or 0. southeastern utility.57 pu is permissible. Section 4. A load somewhat higher than 1.2. However.14 unit values shown in ANSI/IEEE Standard C57. would obviously be warranted. the cost of an individual detailed analysis ity’s service area. The peak loads had a duration of two hours and the ambient temperature for the area was calculated at 30°C.13 under 50 percent preload.91 shows a sample load-estimating guide for a tables are not particularly practical.57 pu. Cooperative engineers should It is not practical or economical to conduct an not use it to estimate transformer loading on in-depth study on every transformer suspected their own systems because diversity factors. The per-unit loading shown in Table 4. Engineers should definitely consult this manual before establishing final policies on loading pad-mounted transformers. ment of this chart. 30°C ambient.79 pu. if this loading level is permitted. If a transformer is being severely overloaded for extended periods. Load-pattern studies of pad-mounted transformers in a certain area revealed that typical 12-hour preload levels were 50 percent of peak load levels. the preload level will become 0.79. Engineers have tried different methods to estimate the 1.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 4 9 4 EXAMPLE 4. The engineer needs to estimate the maximum permissible per-unit (pu) loading for the transformers to maintain normal life expectancy. Table 4.91-1981 levels.14 can be used to and fuse protection assuming estimate the diversified dethat the transformer loading mand for a group of totally Use a loading will not exceed Standard electric homes. bushings. conservatism requires that the engineer take the per-unit loading from the tabulated figures under 90 percent preload conditions. Therefore. which will lead to a maximum loading of 1. Howheating diversity factors in this method apply to ever. The second step . of being overloaded.8 pu cannot be justified from the tables if prepeak kVA load of a group of single-family living load conditions are 50 percent or more of peak units.12. if an overload is expected on a large threea semicoastal southern climate and may not acphase. Manufacturers design items such as keting and load research data. By interpolation.

77 0.00 0.68 0.70 0. To find the load for a group of consumers.42 0.5 kVA Typical Air Conditioner Size (Tons) 3 3.61 0. Example 4.8 kVA 4 5.54 0.67 0.73 0. Values in the charts were excerpted from the South Carolina Public Service Authority (Santee Cooper) Distribution Engineering Reference Manual dated February 2. The chart row labeled “TE” gives the base total electric load related to house size. The equivalent kVA demands for various resistance strip heaters are listed in Chart 3.66 0.1 5 0 – Se c t io n 4 4 TABLE 4. Equation 4.69 0.5 10.67 0.7 clarifies the procedure.66 0.41 0.57 0.5 8.72 0.85 0.0 7.3 kVA Chart 3 Equivalent kVA Demand for Houses With Resistance Heat kW Rating 5.39 0.0 6.000 5. is to find the base kVA load for one consumer using Chart 2. Load.0 Note.50 0.14: Application of Single-Phase Distribution Transformers to Serve Residential Consumers—Sample Loading Guide.0 kVA Demand 5. The “A/C” row gives the air-conditioning load for the air-conditioner sizes shown. Diversity factors depend on the number of consumers in the group.0 20.80 0.3 kVA 2–3.69 0. do the calculation with air-conditioner load and then with resistance heat load.8 gives the total load (LX) for X identical consumers.0 15.00 0.5 14.0 10.49 0.43 0.68 0.38 0. multiply the kVA values from Charts 2 and 3 by the appropriate diversity factors from Chart 1. Diversity.74 0.1 kVA 5 6.85 0.70 0.7 kVA 5.83 0. To determine whether transformer size is set by the summer or winter load.45 0.65 Type of Load A/C Standard House Loads (kVA) Typical Residence Size (Square Feet) Type of Load TE 1. .38 0.46 0.52 0.66 0.500 4.71 0.47 0. and Demand Charts Chart 1 Chart 2 Diversity Factor D Number of Consumers in Group (X) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 Total Electric (TE) 1.37 Air Conditioning (A/C) 1. 1987.75 0.000+ 7.

the transformer size will be set by the 23. homes are to be fed from the secondary of a pad-mounted transformer in a new subdivision.80 Second. (Note: Keep in mind this example is based on a methodology used by a southeastern U.66) = 11.84 + 3.) .66) + (3. utility and should be modified for use in other climates. The total winter load is calculated the same way by replacing the airconditioning load with the strip heater load from Chart 3. The A/C diversity factor is applied to the heating load in this instance.500-sq.8 kVA From Equation 4. and 7. it is assumed the transformer will carry up to 140 percent of its summer peak load for short periods without undue loss of life.8 kVA Total winter diversified demand is equal to Winter L4 = 11. Because the ambient temperature will be lower in the winter. Before the transformer is installed. in kVA = Diversity factor D for X consumers from Chart 1.-ft.8. the total summer load is 23.000-Btu) air conditioners. select the diversity factors from Chart 1: X = 4 consumers in groups D4(TE) = 0. 37.3)(0. The ability to carry more load in the winter is justified because the heating load factor is much lower than the cooling load factor for the assumed transformer service area.35 kVA The 7.66 D4(A/C) = 0. and 50 kVA.” EXAMPLE 4.52 kVA A 25-kVA transformer is the proper size to choose.8 = 32. three-ton (36. as no new houses will be added to the transformer. First. “Transformer and Secondary Voltage Drop. its size should be checked to see if it meets cooperative voltage drop and flicker criteria. DX(A/C) A/C column = = = = Example 4. Select the transformer size that will serve the summer and winter loads and has a 20-year life expectancy.5-kW resistance heaters.5)(0. All homes have identical electrical appliances. in kVA Diversity factor D for X consumers from Chart 1.52 kVA. as calculated: Summer L4 = 4 [(4. TE column A/C Load = Base air-conditioner load from Chart 2. choose the base TE load and A/C load for a single house from Chart 2: TE Load = 4. The 25-kVA unit is still the proper transformer to install.3 kVA A/C Load = 3.7 assumes the transformer full-load rating.35 + 20.15 kVA The ratio of winter to summer load is then Ratio = 32.3)(0.5.80)] = 4[2.04] = 23.52-kVA summer load. can be up to 140 percent of its summer loading.8) = 20. Pad-mounted transformers to choose from are rated 25.8 LXSummer = X[(TE Load)(DX(TE)) + (A/C Load)(DX(A/C))]kVA LXWinter = X[(TE Load)(DX(TE)) + (Heat Load)(DX(A/C))]kVA where: LX X TE Load DX(TE) Total load for X identical consumers. For the winter peak. in kVA Total consumers in group Base total electric house load from Chart 2.7: Pad-Mounted Transformer Sizing for New UD Residential Consumers.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 5 1 4 Equation 4. 1. Each cooperative must set its own percentage loading limit based on experience.S. These calculations are covered in Appendix B.52 Because the ratio is below 140 percent. corrected for ambient temperature. Assume four totally electric. the TE load component of the total load is the same as before: TE Load = (4)(4. in kVA Heat Load = Base resistance heat load from Chart 3. Cooler ambient temperature in winter also increases transformer loading capabilities.8)(0.15 = 137% 23.5-kW strip heating component of total demand is then 4(6.

1 5 2 – Se c t io n 4 4 Another important concern is initial loading versus future loading when load growth is expected. use of these formulas is meaningless if the growth rate is not accurately known. Previous demands on similar loads. Although complicated formulas exist for economic sizing of transformers based on load growth. . For many UD areas. using the same makeup of electrical devices. if possible. have branch stores that result in very similar demands. Watts-per-square foot demand factors. drug stores. and 3. The only differences in some of these installations are whether or not natural gas. as they play a significant role in sizing equipment. propane. supermarkets. fast-food restaurants. Further analysis using both knowledge of specific types of loads and experience anticipating the likelihood of growth in consumer demand is recommended. A simple procedure is recommended. Power Factor = kW kVA or kVA = kW PowerFactor Method II: Watts-Per-Square-Foot Method Electrical demands for commercial and industrial buildings can be analyzed by evaluating typical watts-per-square-foot factors that have been established by utilities and design professionals over the years. A starting point (or a double check) in sizing transformers for these type loads is to contact other cooperatives (or IOUs) to obtain historical demand data (both summer and winter peaks) for similar stores of the same relative size. so any growth beyond the initial level is expected to be insignificant. It is suggested that an analysis be made using all three methods. while providing reliable service. Local geographical and climatological conditions must be considered.15 are typical of most areas of the continental United States. and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment in a dwelling before initial occupancy. Diversified connected load analysis. Convenience stores. Sizing transformers for these type installations is not an exact science and requires sound judgment and previous experience. such as sizing the transformer for the load that is estimated to be present 10 years in the future. The modern trend in housing construction is to install all heavy appliances and heating. TRANSFORMER SIZING FOR THREE-PHASE TRANSFORMERS FOR NEW COMMERCIAL AND INDUSTRIAL LOADS Three-phase transformers—required to render service to commercial and industrial consumers—represent a significant investment for the average cooperative. This subsection presents three generally accepted methods of sizing transformers that most cooperatives and utilities have used over the years: 1. As such. Even when engineers expect load growth. ventilating. the basic values listed in Table 4. for example. they seldom accurately know the rate of growth. 2. kVA2 = kW2 + kVAr2 or kVA = kW2 + kVAr2 2. If power factor readings (or both kW and kVAr readings) are available. Although these factors can vary over different geographical areas of the country as a result of climate factors and building practices. provided geographical influences are similar. as even similar stores can operate differently because of local usage patterns. then the transformer size can be selected to account for power factor by using either of the following formulas: 1. Method I: Previous Demands on Similar Consumers Many commercial establishments are part of large company chains that establish new facilities (or franchises) based on similar building footprints. care should be taken in selecting transformers sized to minimize cost and losses. significant load growth is not expected for individual transformers because the number of living units per transformer is set in the development plans. if such information is available from meter readings. as a crosscheck to validate the final selection of a properly sized unit. similar to the philosophy involved in sizing single-phase transformers. and discount department stores. Care should be taken for loads greater than 300 to 400 kW. or other heat source is either available or economically feasible. Care should also be taken to evaluate power factors of loads for larger units.

with only portions of the devices operating together.8 28. Method III: Summation of Diversified Connected Loads The most analytical method available to predict the actual demand of a new consumer’s installation is to total the individual connected loads and apply diversity factors to multiple quantities of similar loads.7 5. For example. the more accurately an anticipated demand can be calculated. be used in shift operations. so no more than three units can run at any one time.7 9. to predict the effective actual demand.9 7. While this type of system will reduce the demand at any given time to the load imposed by three units. as well.6 4. for example).2 10.4 6. and to the different types of load. both the types of loads and the quantities of similar electrical devices.3 10.6 10.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 5 3 4 TABLE 4. unless otherwise noted Winter 9.5 25.4 21.15: Typical Watts-Per-Square-Foot Factors for Commercial Buildings. Again. Multiple kitchen appliances may. one for each of five zones of the interior space. these power factor values are typical of a number of cases sampled.2 7.000 square feet) Churches Convenience Stores Department Stores Medical Clinics Grocery Stores Restaurants (fast-food) Restaurants (fast-food/gas) Restaurants (family) Variety Stores Schools Motels *All-electric. Following are other items to be taken into account while accumulating electrical load data for diversification: TABLE 4.1 5.2 10.6 Keep in mind that these factors are typical of loads analyzed in many areas of the country and can vary somewhat.6 8. The more information that may be gathered about how electrical devices will be operated.3 6.2 12.6 Summer 6. Approximate Power Factor* 85% 85–90% 90% 90% 95% 95% 80–85% 50% 65% 65–70% .9 11. a restaurant may have five roof-top air conditioner units.16: Typical Electrical Load Power Factor Values.16 will assist in this effort. Type Facility Restaurants Grocery Stores Office Buildings Retail Department Stores Residential Loads Lighting (HID) Motors That Operate at Full Load Motors That Operate at Less Than Full Load Sawmills Industrial Plants With Heavy Motor Load *If consumers have their own capacitors. The philosophy here is that not all connected loads will operate simultaneously. Further discussion with the consumer may indicate use of a demand-side monitoring system that cycles the HVAC units. higher values will result.0 6. Table 4. It is important to gather all the connected load information from a consumer.000 square feet) Offices (more than 100.3 8. or as a result of the operation inherent with the facility. Watts per Square Foot* Type Facility Banks Offices (less than 100. If the developer of the new facility cannot provide valid power factor information.4 41.7 13. as a result of cycling off and on by some automatic system (a thermostat. the result may be an increase in the customer’s load factor.0 27. which will tend to increase the required size of the transformer.3 10. They are a good approximation to be used as a double check of other analytical methods. Also remember to convert the calculated kW to kVA using power factor information.0 7.1 45.

both summer and winter. Listed in Table 4. the overload capacity of standard transformer sizes should be reviewed.17 is a listing of typical types of loads for commercial/industrial applications.13). Type of Equipment Air Conditioning (less than 100 tons) Note: 1 ton = 1. three-phase transformers are capable of similar short-term overloads (again. operate only on off-peak times. based on local ambient temperature ranges.1 5 4 – Se c t io n 4 4 • The larger of heating or air conditioning should be used. such as at the end of a shift? • How many portable appliances are planned to be connected to convenience outlets? • At what temperatures are refrigeration units to be operated (e. coolers versus refrigeration units versus deep freezers)? • Are all exterior lights to come on through photosensitive control? • Are water heaters multiple-element or load-controlled? • Is any capacity currently listed on electrical drawings as “spare” to be actually used in the near future. Note that the table lists both summer and winter overload factors. but not both. just as was discussed with single-phase units on residential applications. whereas others fall into a gray area when demand could fit the top range of one size or the bottom range of another.g. depending on the duration of the short-term peak and the relative loading level of the transformer for the period of time before the overloading condition).19 lists typical commercial/industrial consumers and the duration typically found for short-term overloads. ** Does not necessarily apply to industrial applications *** Consider “spare” only for specific needs. Table 4. As a method of practical conservative . • Do load controllers limit the quantity of any devices running simultaneously? • Do certain devices. Table 4. Some decisions will be fairly easy. It is essential that information be obtained from the consumer to substantiate these peak durations or to determine that shorter or longer overload periods should be used. Air handling units should be included in both listings.18 is a typical listing of the electrical connected loads associated with a new restaurant and how the loads can be tabulated to apply diversity factors so that an anticipated peak demand can be computed. such as dishwashers. based on ANSI/IEEE C57. In Table 4.911981 Table 5 (Table 4.20. Demand Diversity Factor 75%* 75%* 75%* 75% 35–40% 70–80% 35% 40% 25% 10–15% 60% 40–50% 0% typical diversity that is generally taken with respect to actual peak demands..5 kW Air Conditioning (more than 100 tons) Note: 1 ton = 1. based on the typical ambient temperatures of the winter and summer months.13 in this manual). 10°C has been chosen for the winter ambient. decide how large the transformer should be based on the sizes available. but not both.20 is a typical cooperative’s overload factors. Consistent with the per-unit loading guide discussed in this section (Table 4. Once the kVA demand is determined. a separate winter peak demand (with heating loads) and summer peak demand (with cooling loads) can be computed.0 kW Electric Heating Computers Electric Cooking Appliances Lighting Miscellaneous Motors (less than 40 Hp)** Motors (more than 40 Hp)** Receptacle Load Refrigeration Water Heating “Spare”*** * Use the larger of heating or cooling. if necessary.17: Typical Electrical Load Demand Diversity Factor Values. The proper transformer size to be used for a calculated demand should be selected on the basis of the transformer’s ability to withstand short-term overload conditions. and 40°C has been chosen for the summer ambient. or. or not at all? Table 4. Note that this demand should include the larger of heating or cooling loads. Once this information has been determined. and the TABLE 4.

03 1.34 11.17 Demand Diversity 0.42 0.68 0.50 1.00 1.00 1.00 1.80 0.20 1.80 Total Load (kW) 40.09 1.90 1.25 0.08 0.25 2.42 0.61 1.00 0.00 1.89 3.00 0.45 0.08 0.50 0.20 0.00 0.50 1.00 0.50 1.20 1.00 0.75 0.50 0.38 0.59 2.76 3.73 1.56 1.80 0.73 1.00 1.10 Load Description Roof-Top Air Conditioning Units* Heat Pump Strip Heaters ** Baked Potato Oven Potato Warmer Heat Lamps Warming Tray Pie Safe Coffee Maker Soda Fountain Ice Machine (Continuous Use) Ice Machine (Infrequent Use) Cooler Range Hood Freezer Cold Table Iced Tea Maker Microwave Warming Tray Toaster Refrigerator Cooler Table Steamer Dishwasher Prep Cooler Beverage Cooler Vegetable Cooler Outside Freezer Outside Lighting Outside Lighting Kitchen Lighting Dining Area Lighting Dining Area Lighting Heat Lamps/Warming Tray Coolers Under Bar Coolers Under Bar Television Neon Signs Video Game Roadway Sign Total Quantity 5 2 1 1 2 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 20 14 6 1 2 1 1 4 1 1 * Load controlled ** Winter use only .45 0.60 0.83 0.80 2.13 1.00 1.00 1.50 1.70 7.76 0.25 1.70 0.00 3.75 8.16 0.00 0.56 0.80 83.73 2.12 15.50 0.00 1.00 11.65 0.00 0.16 0.60 0.43 0.80 0.45 0.75 1.83 1.38 0.26 1.00 Total Demand (kW) 24.73 3.50 0.16 0.65 1.50 1.00 1.50 1.05 0.80 0.00 0.76 2.25 0.60 0.61 2.00 0.84 0.00 1.20 0.73 1.21 0.80 0.60 1.60 1.50 1.73 1.10 0.52 1.59 2.00 1.59 2. Item No.52 0.00 1.50 0.60 0.00 1.80 2.90 0.25 1.76 2.75 8.76 3.61 2.60 0.80 151.60 30.50 8.50 1.00 1.18: Estimated Electrical Demand (Summer) and Energy Consumption (Sample Family Restaurant).45 0.16 0.84 0.56 0.36 0.25 1.50 1.60 0.40 0.09 1.89 3.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 5 5 4 TABLE 4.00 0.76 1.00 1.70 7.00 0.40 0. 1A 1B 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 Unit Load (kW) 8.60 1.73 3.60 0.68 11.00 0.90 1.40 1.50 1.00 1.00 3.83 1.50 0.00 0.75 1.

Some of the main keys to sizing a transformer are the following: • Understanding what affects a transformer’s loading capability (ambient temperature.0 2.5/7.0 2. Type of Business Fast Food Grocery Stores Large Office Buildings Large Retail Stores Convenience Stores Industrial Plants Time (Hours) 8 8 8 8 8 24* Type of Business Restaurants Hotels Small Office Buildings Small Retail Stores Schools Other Commercial Time (Hours) 4 4 4 4 4 4 * The peak durations may be less.0 4.0 635. most of the work is done.0 3.6 169.5 285.6 145.5 218.3 291.500**** 2. TABLE 4. * From ANSI/IEEE C57.650.* 4-Hour Peak Overload Summer Winter Capacity** Capacity*** 97. On the basis of these per-unit overload factors. 90 percent prior loading has been chosen for a safety factor.0 830.0 952.0 1.245.0 292.0 1. based on 90% prior loading ** Based on 40°C ambient *** Based on 10°C ambient TABLE 4.175. However.600.91-1981 Table 5.320.250.0 2. with 90% prior loading ** Based on 40°C ambient *** Based on 10°C ambient **** Overload factors for some of these units may be limited as a result of fusing limitations at primary voltages of 12. then 75 percent or 50 percent prior loading per-unit values could be used.5 185.000**** 1.0 3.0 730.5 219.).91-1981 Table 5.0 1.8 126.8 108. Care should be taken to not underestimate duration peaks and to apply proper ambient temperatures. • Properly estimating the load (similar accounts.0 1.3 339.3 142.300.0 565. etc.460.19: Estimated Peak Duration.0 24-Hour Peak Overload Summer Winter Capacity** Capacity*** 72.0 1.0 124.5 145.0 485. load cycles.0 1. by using the guidelines in this section. one can become more effective in sizing transformers and the process will become less confusing. along with gaining experience from the local ambient conditions.905.130.260.5 163.5 1.0 847.825.0 1.660.950. If the actual prior loading can be substantiated. Estimating the load is the largest factor in sizing a transformer correctly.150.1 5 6 – Se c t io n 4 4 TABLE 4.0 650. the standard sizes of pad-mounted transformers in Table 4.6 195.490.21: Typical Three-Phase Pad-Mounted Transformer Capacities—Short-Term Overload Capabilities (in kVA).9 249.0 3.0 3.0 975.455.0 328.5 970.095.0 95.5 390.0 1.0 2.0 1. Sizing transformers is not an exact science.5 1.21 can carry short-term overloads as listed for respective winter and summer ambient conditions.0 373.0 2.920.190.0 2. etc.0 2.500**** * Based on ANSI/IEEE C57.5 254.2 kV (or less).940. but use this number with the loading table unless the customer can provide information that is different. diversity.0 1.0 Transformer Nameplate 75 112 150 225 300 500 750**** 1.000**** 2. . If this part is completed correctly.5 498.8 381.* Summer Loading Capability** (% of kVA Rating) 130% 113% 97% Winter Loading Capability*** (% of kVA Rating) 166% 146% 127% Peak Duration (Hours) 4 8 24 engineering practice.0 727.0 109.0 8-Hour Peak Overload Summer Winter Capacity** Capacity*** 84.20: Transformer Loading Capability Table.5 438.425.540.0 2.2 190.).695.270. watts/square foot.

which agrees with the similar account recommendation. after three different methods are considered.5/0.0 10.0 kVA From the chart.0 160. 275 kVA. MAXIMUM TRANSFORMER CASE TEMPERATURES Effect on Public Safety In today’s litigious society.000 sq ft × 12.0 20.40 0. Most people know not to touch the hood of a car that has been sitting in the sun on a hot summer day. • Using an appropriate power factor to correlate kW load to kVA load in calculations on consumer’s load profiles. Therefore.60 0. Every time a transformer is sized correctly.7 watts/sq ft = 304.5 kVA. Assuming a power factor of 0.9 is assumed.80 0.9.7 kVA In reviewing other similar accounts.5 18.8: Sizing Commercial Transformers.0 96. A person touching EXAMPLE 4. Therefore. This step becomes very important when the estimated load falls between two transformer sizes. Example A A customer has requested service for a convenience store that is 24. The total diversified load is 247. However.0 247.50 0. exceeds the loading capability of a 150-kVA transformer.35 — Actual Demand (kW) 64.9 = 338.0 45. it has been determined that a 300 kVA or 500 kVA transformer may be needed.0 1. From the transformer loading table. The calculated load. 150 kVA × 1.0 Diversity Factor 0. some cooperatives may be less concerned with their pad-mounted transformers burning up than they are with having someone burned by touching the case of an overloaded unit.9 = 275. the conclusion is to install a 300-kVA transformer to serve this customer.0 378.8 kW/0. The following load has been determined by means of diversity factors: Load Description Lighting Electric Heat Air Conditioning Water Heater Refrigeration Fans Miscellaneous TOTAL Load (kW) 80. a convenience store has a peak duration of eight hours. The customer has provided the following load information: • • • • • • • Lighting: 80 kW Electric Heat: 60 kW Air Conditioning: 60 tons Water Heater: 18 kW Refrigeration: 160 kW Fans: 10 kW Miscellaneous: 20 kW Neglect the electric heat load because the summer load is the dominant load.75 0. a transformer with a peak of eight hours can be loaded to 113 percent of its nameplate rating in the summer months.8 kW If a power factor of 0.5 9. other methods must be used to help make this choice.13 = 169. the cooperative’s capital investment has been minimized. the watts/square foot method suggests the following load: 24.5 kW.000 square feet. Continued . the kVA demand of this store is 247.0 4. the possible problem can be a manageable risk once it is put into proper perspective.0 67.13 = 339 kVA). but this load would still not exceed the loading capability of a 300-kVA transformer (300 kVA × 1.0 7.0 60.60 0. This concern is legitimate and must be addressed. As another check. the watts/square foot method gives 304. so a 300-kVA transformer for this customer should be installed. Now.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 5 7 4 • Estimating peak demand duration (unless it can be obtained from the consumer) and determining the loading capability of a transformer using the loading tables.5 This approximation may seem a little high for this store compared with the other methods.

0 600. other methods must be used to help size the transformer.75 0.0 288.0 157. a 2.750 sq ft × 7 watts/sq ft = 2. • Wind direction and velocity.40 0.568.9.75 840. the decision must be made regarding what size transformer is to be installed.0 937. The total load is 2.) Example B A customer has requested service for an office building that has 355.0 30. Assuming a power factor of 0. To better understand the problem.825 kVA during peak times.490 kW If a power factor of 0.746 4.250.00 99.767 kVA This approximation is very close to the diversity approximation.8: Sizing Commercial Transformers.75 0.311. The customer has provided the following load information: • • • • • • • • Lighting: 500 kW Electric Heat: 100 kW Air Conditioning: 1.0 0. the transformer can be loaded to 113 percent of its kVA rating. and • Part of case involved. • Location of the unit near structures or shrubbery. A similar account could not be found for this office building.7 kW. The watts/square foot method suggests the following load: 355.00 — Actual Demand (kW) 400.9 = 2.0 2.746 0.7 kW/0. the kVA demand of this office building is 2.0 100. Estimating Case Temperature It is almost impossible to predict the case temperature of a pad-mounted transformer under load because many factors contribute directly and indirectly to the surface temperature: • Preloading.0 450.80 0. On the basis of an eight-hour peak duration.5 Diversity Factor 0.6 kVA Let’s look at another method before making a final decision.500-kVA transformer should be installed to serve this customer. it can be loaded to 2. The following load has been determined by means of diversity factors: Load Description Lighting Electric Heat Air Conditioning Cooking Receptacles Computer Equipment Motor Load (larger than 40 Hp) Motor Load (smaller than 40 Hp) TOTAL Load (kW) 500. • Solar effect.0 75. a major manufacturer took three of its single-phase.9 is assumed. because the summer load is the dominant load. unless otherwise stated by the customer. lowprofile units to the test floor and measured case temperatures at full load and at a sustained . the watts/square foot method gives 2. (cont. • Present load. Therefore.750 square feet.818.1 5 8 – Se c t io n 4 4 EXAMPLE 4. The peak duration for this office building can be estimated to be eight hours.2 222. For a 2.311.480.5 115.500-kVA transformer. Now.480 kW Computer Equipment: 600 kW Motor Load (larger than 40 Hp): 840 Hp total Motor Load (smaller than 40 Hp): 99 Hp total Neglect the electric heat load. • Ambient temperature variation.0 1.311.0 1.490 kW/0.7 a hot transformer case will likewise naturally jerk away from it on contact.250 tons Cooking: 288 kW Receptacles: 1.15 0.9 = 2. Therefore.

5 46.0 16.5 31.0 87. Underground Distribution Transformer Division.or second-degree burn under normal loading conditions is very small.0 — 14. Table 4. I.5 26. the temperature varied widely from one part of the case to another.5 28.0 33. From curves developed by duPont and the NASA space program.0 44.0 60.5 7 Top Oil 2 8 Inside Oil 4 Front View FIGURE 4. Table 4.5 24.0 17.0 67.0 61.14: Case Temperature Measurement Location—Pad-Mounted Distribution Transformer.5 43.5 8.5 180% Load 34.5 35. Inc.5 54.5 5.0 50 kVA 100% Load 16.0 43.0 24.5 150% Load 34.0 33.14 shows the top and front views of a pad-mounted transformer.0 5..0 37. Rise Above Ambient Temperature. However. consider that the manufacturer designs single-phase units of 100 kVA and less to carry approximately 180 percent load for six hours with normal life expectancy. As expected.0 55. 1973.23 shows that the probability of a person’s receiving a first.5 35. the best qualitative thermal data on the subject were developed by E.22: Surface Temperatures Measured at Various Locations on the Cases of Pad-Mounted Transformers.5 16. Another point to consider is that the contact time to produce a second-degree burn is about 2.5 68.5 180% Load 27. Table 4.23 was developed (Lee.0 84.5 16.0 84. °C (36°C Ambient) Measurement Locations 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 25 kVA 100% Load 9.0 25. TABLE 4.5 37.5 21.5 13. Inc.5 13.0 38..5 87.5 16. NASA.5 44. As a point of reference when viewing the table. There was a flurry of activity focused on the problem. .0 Source: ABB Power T&D Company. 1964).5 50.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 5 9 4 overload. The circled numbers one through eight denote the locations of various temperature measurements.5 kVA 100% Load 12. The three designs listed are based on the industry standard of a 65°C rise or less for 100 percent load. over many years through research associated with its protective clothing activities. Tank Temperature Burn Probability The specter of possible harm from hot pad-mounted transformer surfaces was first raised in the technical press in 1972 (Tarplay). duPont de Nemours and Company. Figure 4.5 60. An additional calibration point is that the units are designed not to exceed 125°C top oil temperature with a 25°C ambient temperature at the higher continuous loads.22 lists the 3 2 1 5 Inside Cabinet 6 Top of Cabinet Top View 1 6 4 temperatures and their locations for the three pad-mounted transformers of different sizes.

Determine the minimum kVA size three-phase transformer to power a 100-Hp. STEP 1: Determine the locked-rotor kVA of the motor.15 graphically show the relationship between the motor size. the locked-rotor requirements of the motor. NEMA standards specify starting code letters for squirrel cage induction motors that correspond to the kVA per horsepower required to start the motor.0 transformer is dedicated to supply power to one 115 2. exerate in plenty of time to pull cerpted from the ABB Distribaway from the hot surface because burns.24 is based on the locked-rotor code letters. most EXAMPLE 4. 100-Hp monormally protect against burns up to about tors with smaller starting currents can be pur149°C (300°F). The series of curves of Figure 4. 124-ampere full-load current. and Transformer kVA per Motor Hp for Transformer Thermal Considerations Continued . The body’s natural protection system will tors.5 6. Selecting the proper size three-phase transformer for times that of the pain level.9: Dedicated Transformer Load.0 8.23: Surface Contact Time to Produce Burning. Service to the site will be through an underground three-phase cable at 12. Table 4.0 people’s ideas about burns have been formed by their personal experience with boiling water. causes more severe burns.15: Relationship Among NEMA Starting Code Letters. Unfortunately. three-phase.1 6 0 – Se c t io n 4 4 TABLE 4.9. The problem is perception. Although In Example 4. but it can be used for any motor by selecting the curve that corresponds to the locked-rotor kVA/Hp of the motor for which the transformer is being sized. provided that the starting torque characquite high not to produce a burn in all instances.9.0 7. teristics are satisfactory for the load being driven. the motor the skin may become redselected had a starting current dened. it generally will not within the range of typical NEMA Code G moblister.5 motor that is the total load on the transformer. A temperature of 149°C seems chased.600 feet. Ambient Temperature (°C) 36 36 36 36 36 Case Temperature (°C) 69 88 Time in Seconds Pain 33.0 producing wells have applications in which a 110 3. ution Transformer Guide. which maintains skin contact and. 460-volt squirrel cage induction motor with a locked-rotor current of 725 amperes. a perTransformer cases straightforward process deson’s normal reflex should opget hot but don’t scribed by Example 4. Starts per Hour. DEDICATED TRANSFORMER LOADS Many cooperatives that serve farming communities with large irrigation loads and oil fields with 95 6.000 1 Starts per Hour FIGURE 4.5 Blister 70. The motor will be driving a center pivot irrigation system. If voltage drop is a problem. this type of application is a Under these conditions. fore being burned. thereby. and the transformer thermal capability.0 13. 100 70 50 40 Transformer kVA per Motor Hp 30 20 10 7 5 4 3 2 V S P M K H GF E D C B A T R N L J 1 2 3 4 5 7 10 20 30 40 50 70 100 200 300 400 500 700 1.47 kV with a minimum length of 1.0 19.

1.00–16.) STEP 2: Determine the number of starts per hour planned for the motor under normal operating conditions. Equation 4. STEP 3: From Table 4. select the curve letter that corresponds to the locked-rotor kVA/Hp of the motor. intersection of curve G with the Y axis equals 1. 578 kVA/100 Hp = 5. RUS Bulletin 160-3 describes the procedure to make the voltage drop calculation. Assume one motor start per hour.9: Dedicated Transformer Load.15 3.732)(460)(725) = 578 kVA 1.00 8.40 and up STEP 4: Enter Figure 4.00 10. Move up to the intersection of the starts per hour and the correct locked-rotor code letter curve and read the kVA of the transformer required per horsepower of motor from the Y axis.40 22.00 14.9 Locked-Rotor kVA = 3 × VR × IS 1.5 kVA/Hp.00–11.00–10. Code Letter A B C D E F G H J K L M N P R S T U V Locked-Rotor kVA per Hp 0.24: NEMA Starting Code Letters.10–8. Sizing the transformer with this procedure is conservative because it assumes that the voltage maintained at the motor terminals during starting is the rated voltage of the motor.20–12. plus other useful information.00 18. After the transformer has been sized so it can withstand the starting pulse caused by the motor.20 11.00 4.00–22. (1.00 20.15–3.10 7. These systems are usually run for weeks at a time after they are started.00–20. STEP 5: Multiply the kVA/Hp by the rated horsepower of the motor to find the smallest transformer to be used in the application. Because motor starts per hour equals one.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 6 1 4 EXAMPLE 4.55 3.9.30–7.78 kVA/Hp = Letter G TABLE 4. Therefore.000 where: VR = Rated phase-to-phase voltage of motor IS = Motor starting current at rated voltage Therefore.55–4.30 6. The load is a water pump driving a center pivot irrigation system. check the voltage regulation of the system from the substation transformer through the secondary terminals of the distribution transformer to see if there will be enough voltage to start the motor. (cont.50–14.00 5.15 on the X-axis at the correct starts per hour for the motor being applied.00–9. Therefore.5 kVA/Hp × 100 Hp = 150 kVA If the starting kVA or starting code letter is unknown.00–18.50 12.50 4. the locked-rotor kVA of the motor may be calculated with Equation 4. .00–4.00 16.50–5.000 Locked-Rotor kVA = STEP 6: Most motors started across the line require approximately 80 percent of rated voltage at their terminals under locked-rotor conditions to successfully start.60–6.00 9.24.00–5.00–3.60 5.

or (2) the transformer capacity (kVA) can be increased.16: Maximum Motor Starts per Hour for Transformer Mechanical Considerations.1 0. In this example.9 1 1. the transformer will fail prematurely because of the repeated mechanical stresses placed on the core and coils.7 0.10. Each time a motor starts. The transformer must be sized to Equation 4. Lower absolute impedance of the transformer can be accomplished in two ways: (1) a transformer of the selected capacity and the lowest available percentage impedance (%Z) can be installed. if the current pulses per hour exceed those shown in Equation 4. Another important consideration in multistart applications is the effect of the magnitude and duration of the starting current pulse on the transformer. While the latter choice may be the more expensive of these two options. the less regulation across the transformer. Mention was made of the number of times per hour the motor would be started.8 0.25 Ip 4 where: n = Number of starts per hour IP = Pulse current per unit of transformer rated current withstand the mechanical and thermal stresses imposed by this duty.4 0.2 0. The conclusion is that. The “Starts per Hour” axis in Figure 4.1 to 4 3 10 Sta rts/Ho ur 2 10 to 1 0.3 0. .1 6 2 – Se c t io n 4 4 Also consider the transformer impedance: the lower the absolute impedance (ohms). it essentially puts a controlled secondary fault on the transformer. Figure 4.6 0. particularly during the motor starting sequence when reactive current predominates.9) to determine the number of starts per hour limitation to ensure normal life expectancy of the 150-kVA transformer selected: Transformer rated current = 180 amperes at 480 volts Motor starting current = 725 amperes IP = 725/180 = 4.10.16 shows the curve for Equation 4. but this was not really considered because it was assumed the motor would be started only infrequently.000 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Number of Current Pulses per Hour FIGURE 4.10 n= 4.0 pu of transformer rated current Maximum Allowable per Unit Pulse 10 9 8 7 6 5 0.15 is concerned mainly with limiting the thermal stress imposed on the transformer by the motor during frequent starts. it will always be less expensive than lowering impedance of the primary system.5 0. Look back at the previous pad-mounted transformer sizing example (Example 4. Extensive data have been gathered by manufacturers and utilities about pulse duty on transformers. the primary objective was to ensure that the transformer kVA size was adequate to start the motor.

Ambient air temperature is the most important element in determining how much load a pad-mounted transformer can carry over its expected lifetime (30 years minimum). Preload conditions should be considered when loading transformers. but. 12. Current values listed in ampacity tables are always calculated using a corresponding load factor. and insulation. 8. Cable ampacity is affected by the ability of surrounding soil to dissipate heat generated within the cable. Losses in grounded concentric neutrals of three-phase applications are affected by the physical arrangement of the individual phases. For three-phase circuits buried in conduit. 14. 11. the riser usually is not the element that limits load. This fundamental property is called soil thermal resistivity. Risers should be open at the top and vented at the base to maximize ampacity and to counteract solar heating effects. 15. The maximum ampacity of UD cable is set by the operating temperature of its insulation and depends on the ability of its surrounding environment to dissipate the heat generated in the conductor. 16. The results should then be evaluated considering the frequency of the expected stall conditions. Summary and Recommendations 1. It should also be noted that there are some motor applications that impose significant thermal and mechanical stresses on transformers without multiple starts per hour. Transformer thermal time constant and thermal aging characteristics of its insulation allow short-time peak overloads to be carried without decreasing normal life expectancy. Preload levels given in loading guides are based on transformer nameplate rating and are not a percentage of peak load. Equivalent initial load and equivalent peak load must be calculated to perform loading studies. in most instances. Cables placed in conduit have less ampacity than do direct-buried installations. 13. Soil thermal resistivity depends mainly on moisture content that is seasonally variable. which depends on the relationship between the loss factor and load factor of the circuit. The maximum temperature rise of a cable depends on the shape of the load duration curve. Ambient soil temperature affects ampacity because the insulation temperature rise is added directly to it to determine the maximum cable conductor temperature. Examples include rock crushers and feed mills. 5. 4.Equipment L o a d i n g – 1 6 3 4 By entering the curve on the X-axis at 4 pu. 3. 9. . its moisture content. 7. single-phase and three-phase cable ampacities are selected from ampacity tables. 10. In these cases.25 per hour. and the structural arrangement of the soil particles. concentric neutral. 17. 19. Soil thermal resistivity depends on the type of soil. This is particularly true for motors serving loads that may cause the motor to approach stall conditions. one can see that the allowable number of starts should be limited to less than 1. 2. Two methods should be used together to predict temperature for the month involved: (a) Average of all daily highs and all daily lows for several years. Cable ampacity can be calculated. Direct-buried cables should be de-rated when they are installed in vertical riser pole applications. The ampacity of three-phase installations is reduced as a result of mutual heating between the phases and losses in grounded concentric neutrals resulting from circulating currents. Transformer daily peak loads should be selected from loading guides after predicting what the temperature will be during the peaks. 18. 6. 20. and (b) Average of the high and low of the hottest day over many years. the same basic calculations should be run for the particular motor using the current drawn by the motor near the torquebreakdown curve. Ampacity is defined as the ability of a cable to carry maximum current under a specific set of conditions.

A loading guide developed specifically for the geographical region surrounding a cooperative’s service area should be used. However. .1 6 4 – Se c t io n 4 4 21.8 per unit cannot be justified for preload conditions above 50 percent of peak load. Load-estimating guides based on load diversity and demand should be used to estimate peak kVA transformer load for groups of residential consumers. This means many per-unit figures above 2. The surface temperatures of pad-mounted transformer cases can exceed 60°C during peak loading on sunny days. Pad-mounted transformers for dedicated motor loads should be properly sized based on motor locked-rotor kVA and the number of starts per hour. tests have shown that a person’s normal reflex action in response to touching a hot surface should prevent burning under normal conditions. 23.0 per unit given in ANSI/IEEE C57.91-1981 tables do not apply in practical situations. For cold weather conditions. 22. 24. a maximum loading above 1.

There are also various methods to measure and calculate system ground resistance.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 6 5 5 In This Section: Grounding and Surge Protection Cable Grounding System Function Factors Affecting Cable Grounding System Performance Counterpoise Application for Insulated Jacketed Cable System Ground Resistance Measurement and Calculation Underground System Surge Protection Summary and Recommendations When cooperatives first started installing primary underground distribution systems. The jacket provides physical protection for the cable and helps prevent moisture contact with the insulation layer. which. In addition. Unfortunately. Several factors affect the performance of the grounding system. Through careful arrester location. This jacket can take the form of an insulating jacket or a semiconducting jacket. A solution to these problems was the addition of an outer jacket over the concentric neutral of the cable. RUS cable specifications were changed in 1987 to require an electrically insulating jacket to be applied over the cable. Refer to IEEE for assistance in applying distribution arresters. Low riser pole ground resistance and the application of counterpoise wires reduce jacket voltages. these cables failed long before the end of their expected life because of electrochemical treeing in the insulation layer that was accelerated by moisture and high-voltage stress. the corrosion and disappearance of the bare concentric neutrals was also a major problem. Traveling waves on underground systems affect protection methods and dead-front arrester locations of different cable configurations. because of similar electrochemical action. The jacket also insulates the concentric neutral from direct contact with soil. they used BCN cable. . The application of riser pole arresters and lead length must be considered. The function of the cable grounding system is to keep the cable as close to earth potential (“grounded”) as practicable at all times—during both normal and abnormal operating and under fault conditions. Protection of the underground distribution system from lightning surges that originate on overhead lines is crucial. Unfortunately. was an industry standard and a very effective way to provide good system grounding. Proper grounding minimizes the effects of lightning surges on underground components after the surges are discharged by lightning arresters. higher protective margins than suggested by standards can be achieved. at that time. this feature reduces the performance of the cable grounding system.

its ground electrode(s). More information on field measurement of ground resistance. ground conductors. The neutral circuit includes the cable concentric neutral and any connections to it. if the ground resistance is relatively high at the point of a lightning current surge or a system fault. in reality. the cable grounding system consists of the grounding circuit and the neutral circuit. This resistance is usually associated with driven ground rods and. • Metallic water or sewer systems. System Ground Resistance Measurement and Calculation. the engineer has no control over the resistivity of the soil in direct contact with the electrode. The difference between the two circuits is that the neutral circuit is expected to carry current under normal operation. . According to Ohm’s Law (V = I×R. such as transformer cases. the grounding system maintains all points connected to it at earth potential during all normal and abnormal operating and fault conditions. which is usually the most significant aspect in determining the actual ground electrode resistance. The magnitude of the ground resistance can be found by measuring the resistance of the surrounding soil to the flow of current. A good ground will improve the chances for rapid operation of protective relays and fuses to clear faults and limit personal injury and equipment damage. in theory. all connections between it and the earth must have a resistance of zero ohms. Cables with bare concentric neutrals. The purpose of the connection is to maintain a point in the circuit or on the equipment as close to earth potential as possible. Equation 5. and the soil surrounding the electrode. in ohm-m Length of the current path. and the various elements that affect soil resistivity may be found in a later subsection. A ground is made up of a ground conductor. Soil resistivity can vary widely over a small geographical area and is affected by the type of soil.1. Under ideal circumstances. a bonding connector. However. moisture content of the soil. For discussion purposes. in ohms Soil resistivity. A ground is a current-carrying connection that connects a piece of equipment or a circuit to earth. The grounding circuit is made up of ground electrodes. The most common types of ground electrodes are: • • • • Driven ground rods. the design engineer can minimize the resistance of the metal circuit up to and in the earth. extremely high voltages can result. A good ground will also lower the voltage existing between grounded objects. in meters Area of current path. Soil resistivity is most accurately measured with a four-point earth resistance tester. For this ideal goal to be met. a zero resistance ground cannot be obtained. and may include a separate neutral conductor. and the grounding circuit isn’t. Note that a pole butt ground applied to protect a distribution pole from lightning damage is not considered an effective ground electrode.1 6 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 Cable Grounding System Function Before the function of the cable grounding system can be explained in detail. and soil ambient temperature. soil resistivity measurements. By using low-resistance conductors and electrodes. and all connections.1 R=ρ where: R ρ L A = = = = L A Ground resistance. and • Rebar in reinforced concrete in manholes and vaults. Concentric neutral cables with semiconducting jackets. the term ground needs to be defined as used in this section. A low ground resistance will discharge lightning strokes with a lower probability of system disturbance. voltage equals current times resistance). The reading is obtained directly in ohms. can be calculated with Equation 5. and the nearby earth surface during fault conditions. Buried counterpoise wires. in square meters The easiest and best method to find the value of ground resistance is to measure it with a ground resistance tester.

In no instance. Beenclosure could be touched by a member of the cause the concentric neutral is multigrounded. Pay attention to table. more careful attention system. part. The neutral circuit must will be isolated quickly. because of corro• Limits voltage across line-tosion. All RUS-accepted UD prias the only path for the return of normal load mary cable is manufactured with concentric neucurrent on a distribution system. ground resistance. should be paid to the installa• Allows ground faults to be tion of the grounding system. However. Under normal operating conditions.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 6 7 5 This low-impedance path PUBLIC SAFETY shunts most of the fault curA well-designed. ensure that the forms a relatively low resistance path to the flow enclosure is connected to the lowest possible of current. isolated quickly. even under emerinto contact with an energized conductor is by gency conditions. in as practicable. the concentric neutral of jacketed cable most UD systems have equipment enclosures must be grounded at each distribution transmounted on the ground within easy public acformer. tems have been in place. from the use of bare concentric neutral wye-connected. neutral of the substation transformer along this One way someone could accidentally come parallel path. and neutral. cable. changes in facilities. which satisfies the definition of an effec• Improves the likelihood that ground faults tively grounded system. should the earth ever be used digging into a cable. and at driven no dangerous voltages should exist because the ground rods at each user’s service entrance. Proper grounding rent through the grounded and -maintained grounding increases system neutral. If a phase conductor contacts an enclosure. However. changes in the water ground insulation. tral wires that provide some electrical protection For typical overhead rural distribution lines. four-wire wye with multigrounded frames to safe levels. they tion system to maintain all have established an excellent common points connected to safety record. system is essential to the operOver the years that UD sysation of any electrical distribupersonal safety. at frequent intervals (specified below) cess. where no transformers are located. Proper grounding of a four-wire. One reason is it as close to ground potential that a good grounding system exists. . -constructed. and • Provides a path to shunt how JCN installations the increasing use of JCN surge currents from the are grounded. • Reduces the shock hazard RETURN CURRENT PATH to people by reducing touch voltages during The typical underground distribution system is a faults on electrical equipment cases and three-phase. thereby creating a low-impedance path between the current division will vary depending on earth the conductor and the concentric neutral wires. met. it general public or the cooperative’s crews. resulting. effectively grounded system cable that provides a large neutral surface in diprovides the following functions: rect contact with the soil. The theory is that has often been assumed that 40 percent of the the metal digging tool would first contact the return current is carried by the neutral with 60 grounded neutral wires and then the conductor. it for someone digging into it. For this requirement to be ment is physically raised above public areas. percent returning through the earth. be a continuous metallic path along the route of the primary feeder and must extend to every Unlike an overhead system in which equipconsumer’s location. To is connected in parallel with the earth. which decrease the chances of a shock. Another way to reduce touch residual current caused by unbalanced phase-tovoltage on pad-mounted equipment is to install neutral loads on primary circuits returns to the a buried counterpoise system around the system.

For this reason. or 100 percent of fault protection are the overcurrent relay and the conductivity of a single-phase conductor. For these types of devices to sense a shortMost engineers recognize that a 1/6 neutral. which is usually the driven ground rod. The solid neutral connection holds the primary circuits. As the size of the concentric neutral is ferences can exist between the two systems. The transformer neutral is • The impedance to ground at the point of connected to the cable concentric neutral and fault. which increases cable ampacity and reduces losses. the concentric neutral size in a three-phase circuit can be much smaller NEUTRAL CIRCUIT FUNCTION than the phase conductor. The • The impedance of the fault. the principal means of specified at 1/3 neutral each. Efreduced. the circulating currents inSimply stated. unlike overhead. keep loads balanced for the system to operate efficiently. anced voltages across the equipment will result. Normal practice is to try to burned-out light bulbs or damaged appliances. ungrounded through accident or corrosion. resistivity and the size of the neutral. vide a way to ground the neutral of both three• The line impedance from the source to the phase and single-phase pad-mounted distribupoint of fault. However. The user’s ground circuit is case for single-phase underground circuits. the cable concentric neutral is usually involved . especially 120/240-volt systems. unbalIn a perfectly balanced three-phase system. the directly connected to the grounded neutral of current in it will be almost as large as the phase the transformer to ensure that no potential difcurrent. no neutral or ground currents flow. On single-phase ondary. in UD systems. unequal phase-to-neutral split in proportion to the impedance of the load loads will cause an unbalanced current to flow on each side of the circuit. ampacity. If the user’s neutral becomes isosame conductivity. fuse. tion transformers. the amount of duced in the concentric neufault current depends on the trals when they are grounded following: and connected to each other.1 6 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 For secondary single-phase. possibly causing in the return path. the two energized conin the case of JCN underground systems where ductors plus the grounded neutral from the the neutral is grounded only by ground rods or transformer are run to the user’s service enby counterpoise wires. However. tank should be grounded at two points by separate connections to ensure that it cannot become Fortunately. the greater the current flow in the fective grounding is especially important to earth. lated from the transformer neutral point. three-wire. The grounding and neutral circuits also pro• The voltage at the source. is enough for most current. and both are tied to at least one ground rod. this change in current distribuprotect 120-volt equipment connected across tion does not have a linear relationship to the two halves of the 240-volt transformer secratio change in the neutral size. The most probable losses increases operating systems. Reducing type of fault on an underthree-phase circuit the size of the neutral has the ground circuit is the singleadditional benefit of reducing line-to-ground (SLG) fault. Cooperatives may opUNDER FAULT CONDITIONS erate three-phase systems with three cables On distribution circuits. If the neutral is the same trance where the neutral is again connected to a size as the phase conductor. circuit condition and act quickly to interrupt the with a combined three-phase fault. the fault current magniconductivity of 50 percent of tude must be considerably the conductivity of one phase higher than the maximum load Reducing neutral conductor. • The impedance of the source. as The voltages across the two 120-volt legs will stated previously. RUS specifies that the concenneutral at a point halfway between the 240-volt tric neutral and phase conductor must have the conductors.

In this scenario. the neutrals of all three cables must be the secondary winding is grounded at the transconnected together with No. a high-voltage insulation failure involvcopper grounding conductor and tied to earth ing the secondary winding will immediately be shorted to ground by the center tap of the winding or by the core. 4 or No. No. the age windings of the transformer. The multigrounded metallic paths. It is recomin an SLG fault.1: Typical Distribution Transformer Core Form Design and Neutral Grounding Circuit. See Figure 5. interconnected neutrals and mounted transformer or other equipment locagrounding will reduce the probability of arcing tion. Secondary Core Transformer Ground Neutral Service Ground House Ground LV HV LV Core Wingdings LV = Low Voltage HV = High Voltage FIGURE 5. another metallic 2007 NESC. Unprovide a low-resistance ground at a padder fault conditions. provided the installation complies with wiring system. If 1. 2 AWG former. circuits should be connected together and groundAnother function of the neutral circuit is to ed to keep them at or near ground potential. blowLV ing the primary fuse and isolating the cirFault cuit from the source. causing a fire. must be The secondary low-voltage neutral circuit is grounded at least four times per mile for delibgrounded at the pad-mounted transformer seconderate-separation areas.000from excessive damage and kcmil cable. ing jacket (meeting NESC Rule 94B5) may emThe grounds are necessary to prevent excessive ploy the concentric neutral as a made electrode voltages from developing between plumbing fixand the grounding requirements for the cable tures and appliances connected to the household are met. If the required number part by the neutral grounding scheme is the posof grounds to the JCN (insulated jacket) is not sibility of a fault between the high. or other grounded SLG fault in the transformer. JCN cable. The transformer ground thus prevents dangerous primary HV voltage from existing on the secondary conductors. 4 AWG copthe maximum available fault A low-impedance per ground wire be used to current to flow.) Cables with ground is required from the breaker panel to a bare concentric neutrals or with a semiconductmetallic water pipe or a suitable made electrode. with an insulated jacket. Another contingency corrected in 2007 NESC Rule 354D2. and at least eight times ary and at the service entrance of a consumer. Rules 96C and 354D3c. 2 devices act quickly and posifast protective AWG will be sufficient to bond tively to protect equipment device operation. SURGE PROTECTION GROUNDING Interest in the transient response or surge impedance of tower footings and driven ground rods began in the early 1930s .and low-voltobtained at sufficient transformer locations.1.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 6 9 5 with driven rod(s). reduce the possibility that anyThe neutrals of three-phase one will be harmed. which allows mended that No. A low resistance is needed to reduce the between the concentric neutral of a faulted cable chance of a dangerous touch potential for an and other nearby neutrals. At per mile for random-separation areas. (See the the point of delivery (the meter). cable neutral must be connected to ground primary voltage could be impressed on the fitrod(s) at intermediate points. This procedure also reduces the neutral in parallel with ground rod(s) at the lodanger to personnel who may be working in a cation will provide the necessary protection manhole or enclosure when a cable fault occurs under all except the most unusual conditions. to 1/3 neutral 500. In three-phase tings of 120/240-volt appliances. by keeping metallic objects at the same potential. A large fault neutral path allows bond no larger than 400-kcmil current ensures that protective cables with 1/3 neutral.

driven ground rods can usually obtain adequate grounding. The actual magnitude of ZSURGE depends on many different elements (Bellaschi. Surge current waveshape (rate of rise). and configuration. the cable jacket “sees” a voltage which is the sum of the IZSURGE (current × surge impedance) of the ground electrode plus the downlead component that is due to the surge current flowing into ground at the riser pole. the top curve represents an eight-foot Counterpoise Application for Insulated rod driven into ordinary sand with a measured Jacketed Cable. It is. surge impedance (ZSURGE) and depicts the ZSURGE of various the elements that affect it are grounds for peak surge curof major concern. For instance. Therefore. Armington. 1942): • • • • • Soil resistivity. Difference Between 60-Hz the surge impedance is less Grounding and Surge than the 60-Hz (R60-Hz) resisGrounding ZSURGE decreases tance value. causing a backflash to the conductor (Westinghouse T&D Reference Book. Counterrents ranging up to 12 kA. necessary to establish the relationship between what will be called the surge impedance (ZSURGE) of a ground rod and its measured 60-Hz resistance (R60-Hz ) and determine how this difference does or does not affect lightning arrester protection. transmission and distribution line lightning performance depends on the impulse or surge value of the ground rod impedance. later in this section. In jacketed cable installations. the surge current is diverted to ground. Surge current magnitude. The magnitude of the surge impedance at the base of the pole also determines how much surge current is diverted to the JCN and flows to remote connected grounds. In soils of low or medium resistivity. but not to the extent exhibited by wire. however. which magnitude. and Ground rod length. thus. ZSURGE will be less depends on the surge impedance of a buried than R60-Hz. It is also necessary to understand the effect of lightning discharge path surge impedance on the protection and operation of underground systems using JCN cable. Inpoise wires are also used to lower ground resisspecting the curves shows that. in ohms.2. sandy soils with much higher resistivity. number. a large surge current will produce a voltage at the top of the tower greater than the basic impulse insulation level (BIL) of the insulator string. The magnitude of their shown in Figure 5. . Because their initial effect on grounding with relatively low resistivity. The main cause of outages was found to be direct lightning strokes to phase conductors. The decrease can Ground rods are the most with increasing be shown by plotting ZSURGE common type of electrode lightning current used on utility distribution sysagainst the peak current as tems. The protection method devised at the time required new line designs based on shielding the conductors from direct strokes through a combination of shield wires connected to ground conductors plus adequate phase-toground insulation. Results also show that the surge impedance decreases considerably with increasing current. for clay soils tance. Ground rod resistance is usually expressed as the measured 60-Hz value. and Snowden. When lightning strikes the shield wire. and that ZSURGE. Previous field and laboratory tests have shown that the surge impedance of a ground rod or a group of driven rods is defined as the ratio of peak voltage to peak current. 1964). Otherwise.1 7 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 when engineers were trying to improve the outage rates of transmission lines. they are covered in the subsection. Soil critical breakdown gradient. is less than the 60-Hz measured values. it is important to know the value of protection obtained from grounds when they are required to carry lightning discharge currents. For these grounds. This same principle applies to the dissipation of surge currents in underground systems. It was found that a low surge impedance at the base of the structure is required to make the scheme work.

Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 7 1

120 60-Cycle Resistance 100 80 ZSURGE (Ohms)

60 Rods In Sand



Rods In Clay

0 2,000 4,000 6,000 8,000 10,000 12,000 Peak Surge Current (Amperes)

60-Hz resistance of 120 ohms. At peak surge currents above 6 kA, it can be seen that ZSURGE is less than 40 ohms, a 67 percent decrease. For grounding resistances of 10 ohms or less, the surge impedance is not appreciably smaller than the 60-Hz resistance value. Different kinds of soil and types of ground can also be compared by looking at the surge characteristic of grounds shown in Figure 5.3. Here, the ratio of surge impedance to 60-Hz resistance (ZSURGE/R60-Hz) is plotted against peak surge current. In this figure, curve 2 represents a 10-foot galvanized steel rod one inch in diameter driven into moist clay with a 60-Hz resistance measured at 27.5 ohms. Curve 1 shows four of the same rods as shown in curve 2, spaced in a square 10 feet apart with a measured R60-Hz of 9.7 ohms. As the surge current increases above 12 kA, the ZSURGE/R60-Hz ratio of the single rod is less than 0.4, while the four rods in parallel will not have a ratio substantially below 0.7 at higher currents. To summarize, • The surge impedance (ZSURGE) of a ground rod or ground rod group is defined as the ratio of peak voltage to peak current.

FIGURE 5.2: Variation of Surge Impedance with Surge Current for Various Values of 60-Cycle Resistance. Source: Westinghouse T&D Reference Book, 1964, page 593.


0.8 1. Ratio of ZSURGE to R60-Hz Four 10-ft Rods in Parallel, in Clay 0.6 2.

10-ft Rod in Clay 0.4 8-ft Rod in Sand 0.2 8-ft Rod in Gravel & Stones with Clay Mixture 8-ft Rod in Stones with Clay 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 Peak Surge Current (Kiloamperes) 14 16 18

FIGURE 5.3: Surge Characteristics of Various Ground Rods. Source: Bellaschi, Armington, and Snowden, 1942, page 353.

1 7 2 – Se c t io n 5

• ZSURGE is always less than or equal to the measured 60-Hz resistance of the ground rod(s). • ZSURGE decreases with increasing surge current magnitude. • The proportional reduction of ZSURGE is less for grounds of low resistance than it is for grounds of high resistance. There are also various ways to reduce the magnitude of discharge currents on the neutral circuit.

Arrester Leads Lightning is a current generator. Surge arresters are applied at riser poles to protect cables from lightning-induced overvoltages by shunting the surge current to ground. Surge voltages produced by a lightning flash are a function of the Arrester Discharge Paths current magnitude, its rate of rise, and the disSurge arresters are applied on distribution lines charge path impedance. The arrester is confor two main reasons: nected to the overhead conductor and the pole ground conductor. The dis1. To shunt lightning current charge path that determines surges to ground, which the voltage impressed across reduces the magnitude of Keep arrester leads cable insulation is the arrester surge voltages propagating short to maximize and its connecting leads that on overhead and underprotection. carry lightning current in paralground systems, and lel with the cable termination. 2. To limit overvoltages on This concept is illustrated in protected equipment. Figure 5.4. Two riser pole installations are shown; the lightning discharge paths are highlighted. For the first application to be effective, there Pole 1 represents the desirable connection must be a low surge impedance to ground. In where no current flows through leads L1 and L2. the second application, ground resistance is not a consideration because the voltage across Cable phase insulation will “see” only the arequipment is limited to the arrester discharge rester discharge voltage. Pole 2 is not desirable voltage plus the voltage drop produced by the because the level of protection provided by the arrester lead(s). However, other elements must arrester is reduced when lead voltages L1 and L2 be considered when arresters are applied to proare added to the arrester discharge voltage. tect JCN cable. Arrester lead length must be considered in At the riser pole on wye-connected distribucalculating protective margin when evaluating tion systems, the arrester down lead is concurrent rate of rise. The protective margin is the nected to the pole ground conductor, the difference between the arrester discharge voltages multigrounded system neutral, and the concenplus the lead L di/dt drop and cable withstand tric neutral of the jacketed cable. Because prilevel, where di/dt is the change in current with mary and secondary neutrals are tied together at time expressed as kA/µs (kiloamperes per microthe pad-mounted transformer, the JCN provides second). Protection standards suggest using an a direct path for discharge currents to flow to average rate of rise of 4 kA/µs. Tests have shown the neutrals of premises that the transformer that the conductor normally used for leads has serves. The amount of surge current that flows an inductance, L, of about 0.4 µH/ft. The lead on the various neutrals is determined mainly by lengths connecting the arrester to the terminathe surge resistance of the pole ground. Surge tion will contribute approximately 1.6 kV/ft to voltages induced by discharge currents can damthe total voltage across the insulation if they carage the cable jacket and consumer appliances. ry lightning surge current. The 1.6 kV/ft figure is Various arrester discharge paths that occur at a based on an average probable rise time. Field riser pole have an effect on cable insulation proinvestigations have shown that this figure will be tective margin, cable jacket neutral-to-ground exceeded 30 percent of the time. Some applicavoltage rise, and how current surges on the section engineers believe 6 kV/ft or higher should ondary neutral can damage consumer equipment. be used. To minimize the effect of current rate

Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 7 3

Lead L1 Lead L1 Cable Termination Lead L2 Lead L2 JCN Cable

L1 + L2 = 0 (Desired)

L1 + L2 = Lead Length (Should Not Be Used)

• Objective is to make certain no lightning current flows in the leads connected to the cable termination. Pole 1 Pole 2

FIGURE 5.4: Arrester Lead Length for Two Riser Pole Installations.

of rise, the leads should be kept as short as possible and arresters with low discharge voltages should be used. See Figure 5.5. The effect of lead length on protective margins will be covered in more detail in the Surge Arrester Application Factors subsection later in this section.

FIGURE 5.5: Three-Phase Installation Showing Optimum Riser Pole Arrester Lead Connections.

Pole Ground Conductor After a surge arrester operates to protect cable insulation, some engineers assume no additional damage will happen to other system components. This assumption is not always true. Once lightning current goes through an arrester, it flows into the neutral and ground circuits, causing overvoltages on neutral-to-ground insulation. This is especially a problem with electronic equipment (controllers, RTUs, etc.) that might be on the pole. Special methods should be considered to limit or eliminate problems this condition can and will cause. Figure 5.6 shows a typical underground primary installation fed from a riser pole and padmounted transformer. The direct-buried jacketed

1 7 4 – Se c t io n 5

cable and below-grade connections are also shown. Figure 5.7 shows the same installation except drawn in a way to highlight the various arrester discharge paths: • • • • Pole ground conductor, Cable jacketed JCN, Counterpoise, and Overhead multigrounded system neutral. ence point. The condition could be compared to ground potential rise in a substation during a ground fault. Because the cable concentric neutral is tied to the ground rod, any transient voltage produced by the surge event is transferred directly to it. The cable jacket, applied to protect the concentric neutral from environmental damage, also insulates it from ground, which means the total ground potential rise is disseminated across the jacket. The magnitude of the peak ground potential rise can be estimated as the peak current times the surge impedance of the riser pole ground rod(s). Laboratory tests have shown that peak jacket voltage occurs at a distance where the electric field strength around the ground rod and the ground potential rise approach zero. The concept can be better understood by referring to Figure 5.8. The area outside the circle represents where ground potential rise is zero. The ground rise is maximum at the center of the circle where the ground rod is located. A jacketed cable starts with its concentric neutral attached to the rod

After the lightning current passes through the arrester, it splits among the various paths. The respective surge impedances of the conductors and the surge impedance of the pole ground determine how the current initially divides. Resulting currents flow to both the local ground and remote grounds.

Jacket Voltages Local ground in this instance is the riser pole ground rod. When the pole ground conducts surge current, it produces a ground potential rise when measured relative to a remote refer-

Phase Conductor

Multigrounded System Neutral Counterpoise

Loop Feed Pad-Mounted Transformer

Continuous Counterpoise To Next Transformer JCN Cable Pole Ground Transformer Ground Connections Shown Below Grade For Clarity

Triplex Secondary Cable Service Ground

FIGURE 5.6: Typical Primary and Secondary Underground Installation.

Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 7 5

½ ½ Phase Conductor MOV Cable Pothead Multigrounded System Neutral Jacketed Concentric Neutral Pole Ground Conductor RL Groundline LL Insulating Jacket

Pad-Mounted Transformer


Consumer’s Breaker Panel

Loads R1 R2





Continuous Counterpoise Wire to 1st Transformer

FIGURE 5.7: Schematic Diagram Showing Surge Current Paths After Lightning Arrester Discharge.

and extends radially from the center. It ends at a point that is not affected by surge current flowing in the center ground rod. Measuring the voltage rise at points A and B from a remote reference gives maximum voltage at A and zero volts at B. (The ground rise is measured by dri-

ving a two-foot spike in the ground at each point.) Because the concentric neutral of the JCN cable is tied to the ground rod, the peak ground potential rise is transferred on the neutral to point B, where maximum voltage-toground exists across the jacket. Laboratory tests

At Point B: Ground Potential Rise V=0 V = Max Jacket Voltage Maximum Ground Potential Rise at Point A V = Max Jacket Voltage at Point A V=0 A Cable Start B Cable End


Ground Rod Outside the Circle Represents the Area of Maximum Jacket Voltage

FIGURE 5.8: Maximum Jacket Voltage (Neutral to Ground) Produced by Lightning Current Surge in Ground Rod.

1 7 6 – Se c t io n 5

show that maximum jacket voltage occurs within for the most commonly used jacket thicknesses. 50 feet of the riser pole. Laboratory tests have This analysis shows that the neutral on the also shown that lower jacket voltages will be JCN cable will not be at ground potential when measured at the end of the cable. Cable start and a surge occurs. As with an overhead system, the cable end voltages should not be the same, beneutral-to-ground voltage can reach dangerous cause the cable neutral potential is produced by levels during surges. the current in the two grounds and their respective surge resistances (GE Research Project, 1990). Jacketed Concentric Neutral The ground potential rise and the maximum Any lightning current that does not propagate jacket voltage are a function of the down-lead along the other paths attached to the arrester current and the surge impedance of the riser pole down lead will flow on the concentric neutral. ground rod. Increasing either of these quantities The JCN current magnitude depends on the will lead to higher jacket voltages. If the ground surge impedances of all connected paths. Slowrise exceeds jacket withstand strength, a jacket front waves and 60-Hz currents do not “see” the puncture will occur, allowing moisture to enter surge impedances of the JCN and the other the cable. Over time, this condition could lead paths. The 60-Hz measured resistances and imto loss of one or more of the neutral conductors pedances will be seen instead. The 60-Hz imto corrosion. pedances of each path are lower than their surge Unfortunately, no standards exist that define impedance values. If the paths are connected to the withstand strength of 50- and 80-mil jackets ground resistances lower than or equal to the most commonly used on underground cables. pole ground, a small change in the pole ground The only voltage test required by standards is resistance can mean a large current increase on the AC Spark Test that is used mainly as a qualthe concentric neutral and other paths. The path ity control check during the jacket extrusion with the lowest ground resistance will receive process. An 80-mil polyethylene jacket must most of the current. withstand 7.0 kV applied beAnother look at Figure 5.7 tween an electrode on the outshows that any increase in caside surface of the jacket and ble neutral current is transMinimize jacket the concentric neutral for not ferred directly to the neutral of less than 0.15 seconds. Laborathe pad-mounted transformer voltage with low tory tests have shown that new because of the cable insulating riser pole ground polyethylene insulating jackets jacket. Any current discharged have a surge (1.5 × 40 µs by a dead-front surge arrester rod resistance. waveform) withstand strength applied on the primary termiof about 2,500 volts/mil at nals of the transformer will also 20°C. After being in service, add to the contribution from this value drops to about 1,200 volts/mil after the JCN. If the transformer ground is much lowmoisture permeates the jacket. On the basis of er than the service ground, most of the lightning these figures, Table 5.1 lists withstand strengths current on the neutral will flow to earth at the transformer ground rod. If the reverse is true, most of the current will flow on the service neuTABLE 5.1: Surge Withstand Strengths of Polyethylene Insulating tral and to the ground at the service entrance. Jackets for 15-kV, 25-kV, and 35-kV Class JCN Cable. Damaging overvoltages can be induced on loads Jacket Thickness* New Jacket Insulation Aged Jacket Insulation R1, R2, and R3 connected inside the residence under this condition as a result of surge current 50 mil 125 kV 60 kV components flowing in the service neutral. 80 mil 200 kV 96 kV The surge impedance that has the greatest effect on current division between discharge paths 95 mil 240 kV 114 kV and surge voltages on the secondary is the pole * Jacket thickness over neutral wires ground. Keeping this resistance as low as practi-

Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 7 7

cable means minimum lightning energy on the underground system neutral. The transformer ground must be a minimum resistance because some service grounds are tied to underground metallic water systems. The most economical way to obtain good grounds in the above two instances is by multiple ground rods, deep-driven rod(s), or the addition of counterpoise. Equation 5.2 Z= where: Z L C h = = = = L 2h = 138 log ohms C r

Counterpoise A continuous counterpoise conductor is shown connected to both ends of the jacketed cable in Figures 5.6 and 5.7. It is buried with the cable and represents another arrester discharge path at the riser pole. Laboratory tests have confirmed that, applied as shown, counterpoise will reduce the jacket voltage up to 50 percent under surge conditions. Adding counterpoise also improves the 60-Hz grounding of the riser pole arrester and cable neutral. Direct connection to the JCN decreases surge current transfer to the transformer neutral. Note that counterpoise is used only for JCN applications and is not required when BCN or semiconducting jacketed cable is installed. How counterpoise reduces jacket voltage and improves 60-Hz grounding is explained in more detail in the subsection, Counterpoise Application for Insulated Jacketed Cable, later in this section. Overhead Multigrounded System Neutral The overhead system neutral presents two discharge paths for lightning current once it passes through the arrester. Surge current will flow in both directions away from the riser pole. The surge impedance of the two paths is approximately 500 ohms each, calculated from Equation 5.2 for a single aerial conductor with ground return. As can be seen, the surge impedance is determined only by the height of the conductor

Surge impedance of conductor Inductance of conductor (Henries) Capacitance of conductor (Farads) Height of conductor above ground, in feet r = Radius of conductor in feet 138 = Constant from L and C values in Henries and Farads per mile

above ground and its size (Westinghouse T&D Reference Book, 1964). Reducing the surge impedance of the neutral would be desirable as an additional way to reduce the amount of surge current diverted to the underground neutral/ground system. Unfortunately, its wire size is set by system requirements and reducing the height above ground is not an option. For these reasons, the overhead neutral is not a major factor in mitigating the effects of surges on the underground system. However, it is a vital part of the overhead neutral/ground system that acts with arresters to prevent lightning surges from propagating long distances from the strike point. It should be noted here that some lightning strikes are of such a magnitude that distribution voltage systems cannot be effectively protected from them. However, the majority of lightning outages and damage are caused by induced lightning strokes (approximately 95 percent), which can almost always be eliminated by effective lightning protection (including arrester protection, line configuration, and system BIL).

Factors Affecting Cable Grounding System Performance

UNDERGROUND CABLE SYSTEM CONFIGURATION The function of the cable grounding system is to keep its entire length at ground potential at all times. Its ability to perform this function under fault and surge conditions is determined by the resistance of its electrical connections to ground. Ground resistance can be approximated

by calculation. The resistance of an actual installation can be found only by measurement. The type of cable used—BCN, jacketed, or semiconducting jacketed—will determine the effectiveness of the grounding system in performing its intended function. Getting a low ground resistance can be difficult and is highly site-specific. A question often

1 7 8 – Se c t io n 5

asked about system grounding is, “How low does the ground resistance have to be before it is considered a good ground?” Answering the question with a specific ohmic value is difficult because many variables are involved in an application. A low riser pole ground reduces the jacket voltage on jacketed cable. A low padmounted transformer ground—compared with the service ground—reduces surge voltage on consumer appliances. For JCN applications, the riser pole ground rod resistance should approach 10 ohms, if practical, whereas the transformer ground can have a higher value. The system configurations of bare concentric neutral, semiconducting jacketed, and jacketed concentric neutral cables affect grounding system performance. Because ground rods are the predominant way to obtain grounds at riser poles, intermediate points, and transformers, this subsection reviews elements affecting their resistance and required quantities. Soil resistivity also directly affects the resistance of a ground electrode. Bare Concentric Neutral Cable Direct-buried, BCN cable is considered the ideal configuration for a multigrounded neutral on a four-wire grounded-wye distribution system. Maximum continuous contact area between the system neutral and soil ensures an effectively grounded system. Correct operation of surge arresters is ensured under all conditions. Effective grounding limits neutral-to-ground voltages during faults and surge events, which reduces stress on cable insulation. The highest degree of public safety is also obtained. Unfortunately, corrosion problems associated with the BCN cable configuration preclude its continued use in new installations. Solid grounding by the BCN means the riser pole ground rod resistance has little effect on cable system surge protective levels. BCNs on direct-buried cable provide an effective path to ground under most conditions. The concept is illustrated in Figure 5.9. The overall ground resistance measured along the cable is significantly lower than the driven ground. With two arrester discharge paths available, a poor riser pole ground merely means more surge current flows on the BCN, where it quickly goes to ground. Although no longer in use by cooperatives, BCN cable relieved most but not all grounding concerns for direct-buried systems. Putting the cable in nonmetallic conduit led to a lack of continuous grounding and problems associated with poor grounding. Burying the exposed neutral in soil with different resistivities caused the neutral to corrode to the point where it was lost completely. Besides the reduction in grounding efficiency, open neutral wires caused localized electric field stresses. Over time, the insulation shield deteriorated, causing primary cable faults. The neutral wires of BCN cables were also more susceptible to damage during cable pulling and installation. In recent years, all utilities have experienced premature failures with direct-buried BCN cables.

Lightning Current

Overhead Phase Conductor

MOV Arrester Multigrounded Neutral

Bare Concentric Neutral UD Cable

Surge Current on BCN Dissipated in Earth

Ground Rod

FIGURE 5.9: BCN Cable Riser Pole Installation Surge Arrester Discharge Paths.

Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 7 9

grounded only at both ends of Resulting investigations found the cable. This type of system the primary causes to be elecInsulated jacket installation will decrease trochemical treeing in cable reduces grounding grounding quality when cominsulation and BCN corrosion. pared with a bare neutral conAccelerated tree growth was system performance. figuration. For example, conpinned to moisture in the insider two 1/0 AWG, singlesulation layer and high-voltage phase, direct-buried cable runs stress. As noted, these findings of jacketed and BCN cables, 1,000 feet long, in led the RUS to change Bulletin 50-70 (U-1) to resoil of 100 ohm-m resistivity. The resistance-toquire insulating jackets and thicker phase insulation ground of the bare neutral cable, assuming a caon all underground cables. Addition of the jacket ble effective diameter of 1 inch, is as follows: is a change from the BCN system configuration. Semiconducting Jacketed Cable According to tests conducted by General Electric Company for NRECA and various utilities, the concentric neutral-to-ground voltage of semiconducting jacketed cable is essentially independent of riser pole ground rod resistance and arrester discharge current. The semiconducting jacket acts like a BCN to provide good system grounding characteristics for underground installations. To provide good grounding, the semiconducting jacket must have a radial resistivity of less than 100 ohm-m (see 2007 NESC Rule 354D2c). If this jacket resistivity requirement is met, intermediate grounding for the cable run is not required. Unfortunately, this is not true for an insulating jacket; additional effort must be made to approach the same grounding system performance level achievable with semiconducting and BCN cable. Insulated Jacketed Cable An insulating, protective jacket provides many benefits. An exterior jacket provides mechanical protection for the neutral during pulling and installation. The jacket isolates the copper neutral from contact with corrosive soils. This isolation prevents galvanic cell formation and inevitable neutral corrosion. A protective jacket offers significant mechanical protection to the insulation shield and primary insulation. It also delays moisture from reaching and damaging the insulation layer, increasing cable life. However, insulating the neutral from ground has some drawbacks. The most important is that the performance of the grounding system is reduced. Jacketed cable installations less than 1,000 feet long would normally have their neutrals 1.15 siemens per 1,000 ft = 0.87 ohms for a 1,000-foot cable (from Table 7.6)

If the jacketed neutral is grounded by single 10-foot ground rods at each end with diameters of 3/4 inch, each rod would have a resistance of the following: 32.14 ohms or 0.0311 siemens (from Equation 5.9) To meet safety codes, the BCN cable must be connected to ground rods at each end as well. Adding the two ground rods to the BCN cable gives a total ground resistance for the installation. Note: Conductance (siemens), which is the reciprocal of resistance (ohms), will be used in the calculation to avoid the cumbersome formula for three resistances in parallel. Conductances of individual grounds in parallel can be combined by simple addition: 0.0311 + 0.0311 + 1.15 = 1.2122 siemens = 1 ohms = 0.8249 1.2122

For this particular example, the JCN cable installation has resistance equal to the two ground rods in parallel or 16.07 ohms; therefore, the JCN cable has the following: 16.07 ohms ÷ 0.8249 ohms = 19.48 times the ground resistance of a BCN cable installation

When multiple ground rod sections are stacked on top of each other. This problem is the lack of good soil contact. Specific equations for calculating rod ground resistance for various configurations and examples are given later in the System Ground Resistance Measurement and Calculation subsection. concrete foundations. little effect. for longer runs or in higher resistivity soil. code. Rods should be driven at least 2 feet from structures. However. not counting rods at indithe riser pole or driven into vidual services. Copper-clad and galvanized steel are most common. Ground rods must be driven into undisturbed the NESC requires at least four grounds in each soil. FIGURE 5.10. and poles with DRIVEN GROUND RODS ON THE UD SYSTEM steel reinforcing to prevent the possibility of arcGround rods are the predominant type of made ing from the rod. They should not be placed in the hole with mile. Economics and corrosion considerations normally determine which rod material is selected. the jacketed neusite. and are definitely not in contact with undisturbed soil. resistance of the rod in the ground is the most • Jacketed cable intermediate grounding points. important feature to consider. . electrode on underground distribution systems. and considered adequately grounded according to • Service entrances. both systems would be • Pad-mounted transformer locations. To meet this backfill around an installation requirement. See Figure 5. the jacketed cable would not be adGround rods normally carry high current only equately grounded. Only the measured 60-Hz resistance will be considered here because surge impedance has already been reviewed. a problem that can affect the ground rod resistance generally occurs. There are several ways to improve existing ground resistance.1 8 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 In the preceding case. could be added at both ends. The number of rods necessary for good grounding practice and required by the NESC is discussed here. Loose soil will not proDrive ground rods tral must be attached to vide the necessary rod interinto undisturbed soil. Because of the larger diameter of the coupling. Additional driven grounds after faults or lightning arrester operation. Rod material has • Cable joints. The ground resistance of driven rod(s) is affected by various elements.10: Ground Rod Being Driven by This lack of contact with the soil (disturbed or Hydraulic Tool. grounding. For longer runs. The first coupling opens up a hole larger than the ground rod body and subsequent ground rod bodies make very little contact with the soil. the bottom ground rod is often the only rod making full contact with soil. Almost any metallic material may be used to They are mainly used at the following: manufacture ground rods. grounds at intermediate points face contact required for good along the route. The measured • Riser poles.

1000 3/4" 1-1/4" 5/8" 100 Resistance (Ohms) 10 Resistance Variation with Depth How the resistance of a single ground rod varies with length can best be demonstrated by considering its resistance formula expressed by Equation 5. where L » a a 2πL FIGURE 5. Experience has shown that resistivity can vary widely over a relatively small area. such as a single ground rod. in ohm-m L = Rod length. in meters . The actual variation can be seen in Figure 5. or substation ground mat in the same way. Ground Resistance of Driven Rods The ground resistance of a rod (or group of rods) is found by measuring it with a ground resistance tester. and the amount of moisture in the soil. where: ρ = Soil resistivity. Soil resistivity depends on soil composition. assume an eight-foot rod with a diameter of 5/8 inch has a measured resistance of 90 ohms. Equation 5. The three primary factors that affect the ground resistance of ground rods that the engineer can influence are the following: 1. For example. (Note that this formula assumes full contact of all rod sections to the soil. BCN.3.1 shows that the ratio between the length and area of the current path must be multiplied by the soil resistivity. Spacing. A handy approximation that generally can be used is that doubling the rod length lowers the resistance by only 40 percent. The time required for this improvement is dependent on soil porosity.000 Length of Ground Rod (Feet) 1 4L ρ In –1 (ohms). Equation 5. Elements that affect soil resistivity are given later in this section. soil plasticity. As time passes and the soil fills in around the ground rod body. ρ. and 3.11. Length. Doubling the length to 16 feet will reduce the resistance to about 54 ohms. Any theoretical calculations must start with the basic equation in Equation 5. 90 – (0. This variation throughout the soil volume cannot be modeled easily in ground resistance calculations. Rod number. Resistance calculations can be made for specific installations and ground rod configurations to estimate what the resistance will be.1 or its equivalent. which plots resistance against rod length. 2.11: Resistance of Vertical Ground Rods as a Function of Length and Diameter (Soil Resistivity = 250 Ω-m). The resistivity then affects the ground resistance of any electrode system.3 R= 1 10 100 1.4 × 90). The curves are drawn for an earth resistivity of 250 ohm-m. All formulas developed in this section for ground electrode resistances assume soil resistivity is constant throughout its volume. This restriction must be considered when the results from formulas are interpreted.) Resistance does not decrease directly with length. in meters a = Rod radius. the resistance values will change and most likely improve.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 8 1 5 undisturbed) can make a big difference in the resistance reading observed.

the reduction of the ground resisinch. Use a longer rod. effect of rod spacing. . Two identical rods driven into soil some distance apart will not have one-half the resistance of a single rod. In most instances. resistance is to use a larger ditually applied. As the rod length keeps increasing. or 54 – (0. For the 5/8-inch rod of the above example. resistance. this point of diminishing returns occurs at about 40 or 50 feet. the separation to lower ground ameter rod.1 8 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 Multiple Rods in Parallel Reduced ground resistance can be obtained by paralleling rods to increase the cross-sectional area of the current path.12: Resistance of Multiple Ground Rods (Single Rod Equals 100 Percent). by less than 10 percent. Normal rod diameters used 5. Doubling a rod’s distance should be at least diameter reduces its resistance twice the length of one rod.11 show the effect. Doubling the length again to 32 feet would give a resistance of about 32 ohms. The reduction is about 40 percent for three rods in parallel and 33 percent when four rods are used.4 × 54). Another way to lower ground When multiple rods are acnot multiple rods. the law of diminishing returns applies. Four rods spaced 20 feet ground mats. 100-Ft Spacing 40-Ft Spacing 20% Resistance of Multiple Grounds 20-Ft Spacing 25% 10-Ft Spacing 30% 5-Ft Spacing 40% 50% 60% 70% 100% 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Number of Ground Rods FIGURE 5. Figure which is minimal. The The increased separation is multiple rod diameter curves needed to get the most useful in Figure 5. Additional length produces a very small reduction in ground resistance.11. apart would have an equivalent resistance of which agrees closely with the 5/8-inch curve of Figure 5. For example. assume a is considered only when encountering hard soil single rod 10 feet long with a measured ground or for driving deep rods connected to substation resistance of 60 ohms.12 shows that. for rods spaced greater than on distribution systems are 5/8 inch and 3/4 20 feet apart. The actual ground resistance will be about 60 percent. These relationships hold true Resistance Variation with for rods spaced about the same Diameter distance apart as their length. increased rod diameter tance falls off rapidly.

riser pole application. if four is less important than the 10-foot ground rods are placed 2 L apart (where separation distance. deep-driven take up a lot of area. As the multiple rods or a deepseparation distance approaches driven rod should be used. Source: Parrish.3 × 60 = 18 ohms. But the NESC does have greater depths will not vary as much because of certain requirements for JCN installation groundchanges in temperature and moisture content as ing methods that apply to BCN installations as will resistivity near the surface. The above statements are based on a homogeneous soil profile.13 and 5. Multiple rods can cable installations. FIGURE 5.14: Installation of Four Rods for a Riser Pole Ground.2. the resistance of the Long rods can be hard to ground rods for JCN four rods will equal 15 ohms. A deep rod will be expected Number of Driven Rods to reach the permanent water table beneath the The NESC (ANSI C2) does not specify the earth. . FIGURE 5.13: Installation of Three Rods for a Riser Pole Ground. For example. Another benefit is that soil resistivity at at any specific location. they will have about number of connections should be kept to a the same resistance as a 40-foot rod. The advanunderground cable systems. Two types of multiple rod grounding provide a much lower resistance than 4 × 10 layouts are shown in Figures 5. Cable L 2' min. well. min 2' min.14 for a feet of rod placed close together. Cable L 2L min. See the summary in Table 5. The NESC governs infinity. a single. If the where practical. Specific Site conditions will normally dictate whether locations for driven rods are the following: Riser Conduit Pole Ground Conductor Vent Riser Conduit Pole Ground Conductor Vent 2L . 2L min. If the sepaminimum to tie the rods to the pole ground ration distance is less than 2 L. 1982. drive in soil with a high rock If geological conditions content. It also does not rectage of the deep rod will be more pronounced in ommend what the ground resistance should be this case.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 8 3 5 0. the deep rod will conductor. The resistivity at this level will be considnumber of ground rods at specific locations on erably lower than near the surface. rod should be used instead of decision is made to install a multiple rods to lower ground rod grid. the rod arrangement resistance. permit. The conductor length and L is the length of the rod).

and • Part 3: Safety Rules for the Installation and Maintenance of Underground Electric-Supply and Communication Lines. no specific values are imposed for the resistance of individual electrodes. and • The counterpoise is laid in the same trench as the buried cable (Rule 92B3). Location Riser Poles Rule 92B2b(1) 94B2a Comment Concentric neutral must be connected to surge arrester grounds where cables are connected to overhead lines If a driven rod is used. It is noted in Rule 96C that multigrounded systems extend over a large area and depend on a number of electrodes for grounding purposes. As already mentioned. • The length is greater than 100 feet. the first termination point is the riser pole. Consult the specific NESC rules cited in the text to avoid any misunderstandings caused by condensing the rules in this table. Pad-mounted transformers. Concentric neutral and pad-mounted transformer and other equipment cases must be connected to a ground rod. therefore. minimum length is eight feet and minimum diameter is 5/8 inch for steel and 1/2 inch for copper-clad. For a typical UD installation. If longer or multiple rods are needed. with exceptions. 94B2b 94B2c Pad-Mounted Transformers 93C7 and 314 94B2c (exception) Joints/Intermediate Grounding Points 96C 354D3c Note. The next highest ground should be at the first pad-mounted transformer. a minimum six-foot spacing is required. the lowest practical ground resistance should be obtained at the riser pole. Driven depth not less than eight feet. Rule 94B2a says that the total length may not be less than eight feet. Additional grounding points for jacketed cable are recommended in 92B2b(3) since the neutral is not exposed and is not providing a ground connection. 6 AWG or larger. low resistance ensures a low jacket voltage and prevents excessive surge currents flowing to remote transformer and service grounds.2: 2007 NESC Ground Rod Requirements for JCN Cable Installations. For random separation with communications cables. Pertinent NESC sections are the following: A counterpoise is also considered a made electrode if the following conditions are met: • The bare wire is No. For minimal effect on the system. a good goal is to have the lowest ground at the riser pole. As explained previously. and Service entrances. driven depth can be 7-1/2 feet. Minimum rod cross-sectional areas are also given. The highest ground resistance compared with the previous two should be at the service entrance. • Section 9: Grounding Methods for Electric Supply and Communication Facilities. If a driven rod is used. Joints/intermediate grounding points. Riser Poles Rule 92B2b(2) says that a grounding conductor must be connected at the termination points of a nonjacketed cable. There is no suggested value for ground resistance at the riser pole. If the rod is placed within the pad-mounted enclosure or pedestal. Minimum spacing between multiple rods is six feet. • • • • Riser poles. Longer rods or multiple rods may be used to reduce ground resistance. Concentric neutral must be connected to ground rods at least four times per mile (service grounds not included). grounding interval is eight times per mile (service grounds not included). .1 8 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 TABLE 5.

The resistance of the transformer ground should be less than the ground at the consumer’s service entrance to ensure neuTop View tral surges are not transferred to wiring inside the residence. The ground wire may be placed within 12" of the other sides. Minimum distance between ground unit assemblies = 6'0".16: Grounding Grid for Pad-Mounted Equipment Installation. shows a typical layout. when possible. Place minimum of one ground rod at each corner to obtain low ground resistance of grounding grid. Place ground wire a minimum of 24" away from the side or sides of pad that a person tential between case and ground. However. three. enclosure. Front View Pad These are recommended to prevent a high-resistance contact when two wires are connected with 18" min. it must Tank Grounds be connected to a ground electrode according to Rule 96C. In some instances. where up to four rods might be needed. Tie concentric neutrals together before tap to ground loop to ensure same conductivity as cable neutral.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 8 5 5 Pad-Mounted Transformers This subsection covers only padNote 1 mounted transformers. an exception to Rule 94B2c Note: states that its driven depth may be re1. including cases of X2 pad-mounted devices. X3 H1A X1 Rule 314 says that conductive parts Ground Strap must be grounded. to obtain the proper ground resistance at a transformer. The separation distance between rods Notes: should be kept to at least twice the burial depth 1. a Note 3 target for transformer and riser pole grounds can Opening be determined. ground resistance and minimize the touch po3. 8'0" Two. except in areas of high soil resistivity FIGURE 5. The engineer should make a survey of existing grounds in the area. If a rod is used #4 Copper Ground Rod Clamps Ground Wire within the footprint of a pad-mounted Tamp Well Under Pad 7'6" min. Grounding grid 1/0 AWG bare copper buried 18” minimum below ground.15: Grounding Assembly for Pad-Mounted Single-Phase Transformers. Figure 5. After a representative value is found. Most cooperatives do not have control over the value of the service ground. duced to not less than 7-1/2 feet. A continuous ground conductor loop is shown that ensures solid grounding if one connection fails. FIGURE 5.15 shows a typical grounding assembly for a single-phase. sugH1B gestions or recommendations are valid for any aboveground enclosure. installing a 2. Two clamps are shown for the ground rod. Figure 5. pad-mounted transformer. or four rods are sometimes used min.16 would stand on to operate the equipment. Because the neuJumper #4 Copper tral is brought to the transformer. The ground conductor GUIDELINE ONLY should be a continuous wire connected to two points on the transformer. one clamp and to maintain ground electrode effectiveness if one connection is defective. Transformer Installation (Front View) . Pad-mounted transformers are norGUIDELINE ONLY mally grounded with one driven rod. Run wire four-point grounding grid will obtain a low under pad to opening and allow 5'0" for grounding live front switch/fuse enclosures.

Rule 354D says that. . Because jacketed cable that could also be used at a jacketed cable joint systems are not as well grounded as BCN sysor intermediate neutral connection to ground. However. and seal the connection against moisture. one rod must be added. dated June 2. Extreme care should be used with this type of connection below ground so the jacket is adequately resealed to prevent moisture ingress. 2000.17 and 5. It also requires that the neutrals together and to make up the ground the neutral be grounded at each cable joint that is loop to and from the ground rod. The at individual services. if required for system Ground Rod grounding. any joint or splice should be used as a three neutrals are tied to ground by separate means for connecting the proper number of driconductors attached to ground rods. An ideal additional connections besituation is shown in which a tween the concentric neutral continuous ground conductor is used to bond and ground for JCN systems. grounding assembly using in-line ground connectors. The device holds promise as a quick and simple way to make an intermediate grounding point in a cable run.18 shows a direct-buried installation under normal conditions.1 8 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 Figure 5. not otherwise insulated to the voltage expected Figure 5. jacket where the neutral is Rule 92B2b(3) recommends opened and sealed. there shall not be less UM48-3 of RUS Bulletin 1728F-806 (D-806) than eight grounding installations in each mile. grounded.19 could be connected to three adequately spaced ground rods. If the desired resistance is not obtained.17 shows an instalJoints/Intermediate lation that could be used at a Grounding Points BCN and jacketed cable joint or interThe 2007 NESC does not call semiconducting mediate neutral connection to for ground rods to be installed jacketed cables ground. The principle is to strip the jacket from JCN Cable Joint a short piece of cable.17: Installation of JCN Connection in Above-Grade Pedestal. not including grounds failed connection will not affect grounding.19 shows a direct-buried intermediate dial resistivity less than 100 ohm-m. for connection to the concentric neutrals is made random-lay installations with communication casimilar to the installation shown in drawing bles in the same trench. wrap a braid brazed to a connecting rod around the concentric neutral. Intermediate properly sealed around the concentric neutral to grounding is not required for BCN cables or prevent moisture entrance. Two ven ground rods to improve system grounding. Note that rods should be installed with an inter-rod distance equal to two rod lengths for a reasonable degree of effectiveness. This connection should be not including the service grounds. All tems. Ground resistance is to be 25 ohms or less. so one least four times per mile. GUIDELINE ONLY FIGURE 5. These cable connecat direct-buried joints if the don’t need tions are aboveground to preconcentric neutral is effectively vent water from entering the intermediate grounds. jumpers are added between the cable phases to Rule 96C says that JCN must be grounded at provide a continuous grounding loop. The installations shown in Figures 5. Service Entrance NESC Rule 250-84 requires one driven ground rod at the service entrance to a residence. semiconducting jacketed cables with jacket raFigure 5.

Engineer to specify number and length of ground rods. Use solid copper inside and extended through moisture seal.000 kcmil conductor— use #2 AWG solid copper ground wire. . FIGURE 5. 500 kcmil to 1. such as personal computers. Also. 500 kcmil conductor—use #2 stranded copper ground wire. if problems arise because of failed equipment in the residence. 2. 3. Secondary metal oxide varistor (MOV) arresters with low discharge voltages are a possible solution. Grounding Conductor Solid Copper (Continuous) #2–#4 as Required Ground Rod(s) In-Line Connecting Rod Compression Connector Moisture Seal Notes: 1. the cooperative usually has no control over the ground resistance at the meter base. To lessen the probability that incoming surges on a JCN cable will cause damage to voltagesensitive consumer equipment. The arresters should be installed as close to the protected equipment as possible. One installation that will provide a resistance to ground lower than the distribution transformer ground is a service neutral tied to the metal casing of a domestic water well. See Note 2 0” 10’ um im Min 0” 10’ um im Min FIGURE 5. with individual protection. Underground Primary Cable. 4.19: Intermediate Grounding Assembly. It is recommended that connections to JCN be made above ground in an enclosure when feasible to preserve moisture integrity of jacket. preferably in the meter base rather than at the transformer. In this instance. Adequate moisture seal must be provided around connections to jacketed cable neutral. 2. Use this grounding assembly only with proper sealing on concentric neutrals that prevent moisture permeating the insulation. ensure that the service ground should have a value larger than the transformer ground.18: Grounding Assembly for JCN Underground Primary Cable. More required with high ground resistance. However. 4. trying to reduce the system ground would not be practical. the consumer should provide sensitive electronic equipment. Four grounds per mile minimum.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 8 7 5 See Note 1 See Note 3 Notes: 1. #2 AWG to 400 kcmil conductor— use #4 AWG solid copper ground wire. the service ground would be a logical component to investigate. It is not practical for a cooperative to check every service ground in its territory to determine its relative resistance value compared with other system grounds. As noted. Engineer to specify number and length of ground rod(s). GUIDELINE ONLY 5. 3. Moisture seal around connections to the jacketed cable neutral. #2 Thru 4/0 conductor—use #4 stranded copper ground wire.

Installation of a counterpoise is particularly simple on underground systems Equation 5. in meters (m) 20 250 Ω-M 10 100 Ω-M 500 Ω-M 0 0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 220 240 260 280 300 Length (Feet) FIGURE 5. Figure 5. system ground resistance.1 8 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 Counterpoise Application for Insulated Jacketed Cable Counterpoise is not frequently There is a method to estidiscussed in connection with mate the ground resistance of Use counterpoise BCN underground cable sysa counterpoise installation. Burying below the frost line must also be considered.4. With increasing use of this cable. Annealed Iron Wire. It is more often associVarious aspects affect the ated with transmission line ground resistance of the concable installations. when insulated JCN cable is used.20: Counterpoise 60-Hz Resistance Variation with Length and Different Soil Resistivities. When a counterpoise is used only to improve surge arrester grounding. grounding system. A counterpoise terpoise be installed from the riser pole to the is one method that will improve ground quality first transformer in the system. It is recommended that a continuous counsemiconducting jacketed cable. Results are shown for burial depths of 30 and 42 inches. Counterpoise can be extremely helpful where upper layer soil resistivity is less than that of the soil below. only for insulated JCN tems. A counterpoise preand line outage rates caused sents a surge impedance to by lightning. counterpoise may provide a workable alternative. operatives to install cable with an insulating The impedance is different from the steady-state jacket. Burial Depth = 30” Ω 60-Hz Resistance (Ω) 30 where: ρ L a d ρ 2L In –1 for d < L πL ad = Soil resistivity. When rock layers prevent driving rods of a suitable length to the proper depth. in meters (m) = Burial depth.4 shows that depth . R= 50 40 Counterpoise Wire 5/16” Diameter. in meters (m) = Conductor radius. Surge impedance affects riser ground quality is reduced in comparison with pole grounding and jacket overvoltage protecthe quality that could be had with BCN and tion. resistance to ground tion. or R60-Hz. Lower ground resistance results from inof a counterpoise electrode can be calculated creasing the earth area in contact with the using Equation 5.4 because a trench is usually being opened. in ohm-m (Ω-m) = Conductor length. RUS requires cothe flow of lightning current. special care should be taken to bury counterpoise below a stable moisture level.20 shows how the resistance of a #4 AWG copper wire varies with length in soils of different resistivities. counterpoise lengths greater than 300 feet are not generally considered to be cost-effective. Galvanized. tower-footing surge resistances ductor. So that the ground resistance does not vary widely during the year. It is a conductor buried in the ground as a practical means COUNTERPOISE GROUND RESISTANCE to reduce ground resistance at a desired locaThe steady-state. An analysis of Equation 5. 3-Strand.

How the surge impedance of counterpoise affects the pole ground and the jacket voltage is shown by Figure 5. Less current on the JCN means less current flowing to the transformer neutral. the resistance it encounters is the surge impedance. in Farads/unit length 150 140 130 120 110 100 90 Surge Impedance (Ω) 80 70 60 50 40 30 4 20 10 0 1 60 Hz Resistance 2 3 Microseconds (µs) 4 5 3 2 1 Z = 150-Ω Initial Surge Impedance R = 10-Ω 60 Hz Resistance Curves: Counterpoise Length 1. Connection to the insulated cable neutral improves grounding of the neutral and reduces overall system ground resistance. Two possible counterpoise configurations are shown.000 ft 2. buried in the ground. 250 ft FIGURE 5. a surge travels at less than one-half the speed of light (the speed of light is assumed to be 1.22. after a series of reflections. However. or run vertically on a riser pole. thus. Curves one to four of Figure 5.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 8 9 5 does not dramatically affect counterpoise resistance. 1964). . it provides a parallel path for lightning currents to flow to ground. A shorter counterpoise of 250 feet will have the same 150-ohm initial surge impedance. Lower jacket surge voltages will reduce the probability of jacket puncture over time.5 ZSURGE = L ohms C impedance is usually designated by the symbol ZSURGE and is expressed by Equation 5. One is a continuous where: ZSURGE = Counterpoise surge impedance. not the steady-state resistance. more and more of its length helps to shunt the current to ground. the surge impedance reduces to the steady-state resistance. Less surge current in the ground rod decreases neutral-to-ground voltage and. but its steady-state resistance will occur in onefourth the time (1.000-foot counterpoise with an initial 150-ohm surge impedance will reach a resistance equal to its steady-state value in about six microseconds (6 µs). the jacket voltage. As the wavefront of a current surge travels along the conductor. COUNTERPOISE SURGE IMPEDANCE When lightning current travels along a conductor. A horizontal buried counterpoise has an initial surge impedance that depends slightly on soil conditions and is assumed to be about 150 ohms. Surge Equation 5. The additional path diverts surge current from the pole ground and JCN.21 show the relationship (Westinghouse T&D Reference Book. any increase in soil resistivity will increase the ground resistance proportionally.5 µs). 500 ft 4. REASONS FOR COUNTERPOISE USE Counterpoise is buried with jacketed cable to reduce ground resistance at the point of application. If the counterpoise wire is run from the riser pole to the first transformer. The final result is that.000 feet per microsecond).5. Transient or surge current initially “sees” the surge impedance of the conductor. in Henries/unit length C = Conductor capacitance. Depending on the dielectric constant of the soil.21: Effect of Length on Transient Surge Impedance of Counterpoise. whether it is hung in the air. Tests have shown that a 1. in ohms L = Conductor inductance. The decay time depends on the length of the counterpoise and the propagation speed of the surge. 750 ft 3. 1. R60-Hz.

the top of the pole and extending to the first A full-length counterpoise connected to the transformer. it is assumed an incoming top of the riser pole. with no counterpoise apflowing on the JCN from the riser pole and the plied. The connection.1 9 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 MOV Arrester Riser Pole S1 Cable Jacket R L Dead-Front MOV Arrester Pad-Mounted Transformer Service Loads Cable Termination 150' 100' ZSURGE Counterpoise RG 25 S2 S3 RG ZSURGE /R60–Hz Counterpoise RT RS Legend: R L I RG RG/25 ZSURGE RT RS = = = = Riser pole ground conductor resistance Riser pole ground conductor inductance Surge current in riser pole ground conductor Riser pole ground rod resistance = Remote ground rod resistance = Counterpoise surge impedance = Transformer ground rod resistance = Service entrance ground rod resitance FIGURE 5. cable than the pole ground (RG). Any changes in the jacket voltage caused . by the addition of counterpoise will be less than counterpoise connected directly to the JCN at the no-counterpoise case. The produce a certain voltage parallel impedance reduces the surge current across the cable jacket. The other is connected to the riser pad-mounted transformer pole ground rod and extends neutral puts its surge imto a remote ground (RG/25) that pedance in parallel with the measures at least 25 times less Always connect transformer ground rod.22: Counterpoise Application to Reduce Jacket Voltage. counterpoise at the concentric neutral. tion ensures the jacket voltage lightning surge with a set magwill be less at the transformer nitude and rate of rise will than at the riser pole. and the In the examples in this secservice neutral.

thus. but still should be considered to improve system grounding. S2 Open). In both cases. the peak jacket voltage is caused mainly by the surge current magnitude: I (R + RG). the slight decrease in the ground resistance will reduce ground potential rise by a factor depending on the difference between the magnitude of the riser pole ground (RG) and the 150-ohm surge impedance of the counterpoise. Therefore. the L di/dt voltage could exceed the IR component in the case of a low down-lead current. This case represents laying counterpoise terminated in a ground rod or running a connection to an existing electrode to decrease 60-Hz grounding.22. the counterpoise is shown connected in parallel with the jacketed concentric neutral at both ends of the cable.1: No Counterpoise Added (Switches S1. Equation 5.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 9 1 5 EXAMPLE 5. .2: Attaching a 100-Foot Counterpoise to the Riser Pole Ground Rod and the Other End to a Remote. as explained in Example 5. One component of the peak jacket voltage at the sending end of the cable is then equal to the ground potential rise caused by surge current flow through the ground rod. in ohms Riser pole ground rod 60-Hz resistance. EXAMPLE 5. For a standard 8 × 20 µs current waveform. The jacket voltage at the transformer or receiving end of the cable will not be the same as the sending end because the voltage on the cable neutral is determined by the respective currents flowing in each ground and the resistance of each ground. When a surge arrester conducts. For the configuration depicted in Figure 5. maximum di/dt occurs during the initial part of the wavefront.22.2. For surge currents peaking in 0. The same could happen for a high di/dt and low ground surge impedance. If the pole ground has a surge impedance of less than 15 ohms. The surge impedance of the concentric neutral depends on the geometry of the cable and the dielectric constant of the jacket material. and S3 Open). In Figure 5. Initially. most of the current will be diverted to the ground rod. its surge impedance is connected directly in parallel with the surge impedance of the concentric neutral and the down-lead conductor. July 1990). Because R is less than RG.3. lightning current will split between the pole ground conductor and the JCN in proportion to their respective surge impedances. S1 and S3 Open). This counterpoise installation will not reduce jacket voltages very much.5 to eight microseconds. the counterpoise will present a 150-ohm impedance in parallel with the riser pole ground rod. will not give the same effect. With the counterpoise run to the top of the riser pole.6. in amperes Riser pole ground conductor resistance. in Henries Surge current rate of rise. S2. Test data have shown that connection of continuous counterpoise to JCN cable near the riser pole arrester will reduce jacket voltages by up to 50 percent for fast-front waveforms and 35 percent for slow-front waveforms (General Electric. the jacket peak voltage can be accurately represented by the product of the pole ground conductor current and the surge impedance of the ground rod. Continuous or Full-Length Counterpoise (Switches S1 and S3 Closed. in volts Current in riser pole ground conductor. it also lowers both the ground potential rise and the L di/dt component of the down-lead voltage. Connecting a continuous counterpoise at the riser pole ground rod. However. for steep-front currents peaking in less than two microseconds.6 Vng = I(R + RG) + L di/dt where: Vng I R RG L di/dt = = = = = = Riser pole neutral-to-ground voltage. Another component of the neutral-to-ground voltage at the riser pole is the L di/dt voltage of the pole ground conductor. Laboratory tests have shown that the L di/dt component is usually less than the IR component and will peak before the surge current waveform peaks. the total neutral-to-ground voltage can be represented by Equation 5. the L di/dt component would predominate and produce peak jacket voltage. It will fall somewhere between the 35-ohm cable surge impedance and the 150-ohm counterpoise surge impedance. in amperes per second EXAMPLE 5. The receiving end voltage will always be the smaller of the two. in ohms Pole ground conductor inductance. This connection will reduce the current to the pole ground. the peak neutral-to-ground voltage and. As a consequence. Smaller Resistance (Switch S2 Closed.

use a three-point or clamp-on ground resistance tester. very similar results will be obtained for JCN cable installed in conduit. which results in a lower resistance in the shell. an additional shell does not significantly add to the earth The main component resistance surrounding the of ground resistance rod.or eight-grounds-per-mile NESC requirement. 5. and • Resistance of the body of earth surrounding the ground rod. RECOMMENDATIONS FOR JACKETED CABLE 1. Counterpoise will reduce jacket voltages to some extent. Three-Point Meter A three-point ground resistance tester can measure the ground resistance of the following: • A single ground rod. the shell nearest the rod has the smallest surface area and consequently the greatest resistance. think of the ground rod as being surrounded by concentric shells of earth (see Figure 5. The resistance of the ground rod and the contact resistance are usually extremely small compared with the earth resistance.23). Obtain a low ground resistance (10 ohms or less is desired) at the riser pole for any jacketed cable installation. A driven ground rod is used to terminate the counterpoise conductor. . if practicable. A measured ground resistance of 10 ohms or less is desired at riser poles. the engineer needs to understand ground resistance. therefore. 6. 7. A continuous counterpoise should be installed to the first transformer for every underground installation. The rod is counted toward the four. • Resistance of the contact between the ground rod and the soil directly in contact with the rod. If a full-length counterpoise cannot be justified economically. Although the previous discussion mentioned only direct-buried JCN cable. Counterpoise will not significantly reduce touch potentials on jacketed cable installations. • Multiple ground rods. 4. the ground rod. counterpoise of 100 to 300 feet should be installed at the riser pole. The counterpoise will also divert transformer MOV arrester current from the service neutral in case of a high transformer ground resistance (RT). fast-front or slow-front. The conductor is to be random-lay in the same trench as the cable. System Ground Resistance Measurement and Calculation FIELD MEASUREMENT OF SYSTEM GROUNDS To correctly measure the resistance of a system ground. Ground resistance consists of the following: • Resistance of the ground rod. This strategy is best to reduce jacket voltages for all types of surges. The counterpoise must be surrounded by soil. depending on soil resistivity and condition. To understand earth resistance. To measure ground resistance. These shells have equal thickness. The inductance of the pole ground conductor cannot be reduced. The final shell is considered the effective resistance is resistance of the area and depends on the driearth surrounding ven depth and the diameter of the ground rod. At some remote point. and • Small grids of ground conductor. regardless of the riser pole ground resistance. The farther the shell is from the rod. It also improves the 60-Hz ground resistance at the pad-mounted transformer. The counterpoise must be attached to the insulated JCN at the top of the riser pole to obtain optimum jacket voltage reduction. 3. proper safety procedures must be followed. the greater the surface area. 2. Therefore.1 9 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 amount of current on the service neutral.

Unfortunately.24 shows the correct test setup. X P C Grounding Electrode Under Test X P Test Probe Test Probe C Grounding Electrode Under Test X Test Probe P Test Probe C 62% of D D Effective Resistance Areas Do Not Overlap Effective Resistance Areas Overlap D Resistance Resistance of Test Probe C Resistance Resistance of Grounding Electrode Distance FIGURE 5. The current (C) terminal and the potential (P) terminal are each connected to separate test probes. Figure 5. .24: Correct Ground Resistance Test Setup. then the effective resistance areas of probes C and X will overlap (see Figure 5. For readings to Current Current FIGURE 5. The resistance reading shown on the test is the ground resistance of the electrode.24. If the three electrodes are too close together.25). see IEEE Standard 81. The tester injects a current through test probe C and grounding electrode X. FIGURE 5. This ground resistance tester has three terminals as shown in Figure 5. it is important to space the test probes and electrodes correctly. This test procedure is known as the Fall-of-Potential Method.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 9 3 5 These measurements must be made before the ground rod or grid is connected to the system ground. The resulting potential drop is measured between test probe P and grounding electrode X. the tester cannot practically measure the ground resistance of a long counterpoise. During this test. This overlapping produces inaccurate resistance readings.23: Earth Resistance.25: Incorrect Ground Resistance Test Setup. The third terminal (X) is attached to the grounding electrode that is being tested. For additional information on this test method.

the electrode system area is 20 feet × 20 feet.4 provides a list of recommended spacing for the C and P test probes. if four rods form a square with 20-foot sides. Source: Biddle Instruments. the 62 percent method should place the potential probe outside the effective resistance area of the other two electrodes. This instrument clamps around a ground rod or ground conductor and displays a resistance reading. Most newer models have an indicator to signal the operator if the test probe resistance values are excessive or if there is a lack of continuity between the leads and the test electrode.4: Spacing of Test Probes for Testing Resistance of an Electrode System. Table 5. The maximum dimension is the diagonal distance across the electrode system area. the spacing must be increased so the effective resistance areas do not overlap. The preferred placement for P is still at 62 percent of the total distance and is in a straight line between C and the electrical center of the electrode system. The tester contains a constant voltage source that induces a current into the test ground. As shown in Figure 5. 1990. . Maximum Dimension (ft) 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 Distance to P (ft) 40 60 80 90 100 105 120 125 130 140 200 240 280 310 340 365 400 420 440 Distance to C (ft) 80 100 125 140 160 170 190 200 210 220 320 390 450 500 550 590 640 680 710 be correct.000 ohms. choose the next highest maximum dimension.1 9 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 TABLE 5. Also listed are the distances to the P probe. Using Table 5. 1981.. increase the distance to the C probe. Probe P is placed at 62 percent of the distance from the ground rod to the C test probe. Table 5. For example. Most three-point meters have a resistance range of 0 to 500 ohms and are accurate for test probe resistance values of up to 5. The preferred placement for P is in a straight line between C and X. Depth of Driven Rod (ft) 6 8 10 12 18 20 30 Distance to P (ft) 45 50 55 60 71 74 86 Distance to C (ft) 72 80 88 96 115 120 140 TABLE 5. Clamp-On Meter Another type of meter used to make ground resistance measurements is the clamp-on ground resistance tester shown in Figure 5. which is 40 feet.3: Spacing of Test Probes for Testing Resistance of a Single Ground Rod. To test multiple ground rods or small grids. This current is detected and used to determine the resistance. The table shows that P should be at 200 feet and C at 320 feet.3 lists the recommended distances for probe C when testing a single ground rod. This area has a diagonal of approximately 28 feet. Unlike the three-point test.26.24.4. Source: AEMC Corp. this measurement is made with the ground rod or conductor still connected to a multigrounded system.

ground resistance measurements are not possible.990 ohms and a ground current range of zero to 1. FIGURE 5. most of the voltage drop is across Rx. Source: AEMC Corporation.99 amperes. 1992. This meter has a resistance range of two to 1. Rx represents the ground being measured. the resistance reading on the meter is basically the value of Rx. several ground conductors and one or more ground rods are bonded together. the meter must be clamped on a ground rod or conductor that has only one return path to the neutral. FIGURE 5. clamp meter onto the ground rod itself.99 amperes during the test. To work properly. Here. If the meter is clamped onto a ground loop. For best reading.28. Ground loops are often inside pad-mounted transformers.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 9 5 5 Figure 5. Placing the clamp below the loop or disconnecting one side of the loop forces the induced current to flow through the test ground (Rx). Ground Resistance of Multigrounded System I E RX Ground Resistance of Ground Rod that is being Tested R1 R2 Rn–1 Rn FIGURE 5.27: Circuit Diagram for Multigrounded System. R1 through Rn represent the remaining grounds in a multigrounded system.28: Ground Resistance Test Setup for Clamp-On Tester. Front View of Transformer H1B X3 Ground Strap X1 H1A X2 Copper Ground Wire Tank Grounds Copper Ground Wire Clamp-On Ground Resistance Meter (See Note 1) Ground Rod Clamps Note: 1. This test setup is shown in Figure 5. . the induced current will circulate around the loop and the meter will show a very low resistance reading. If the ground current exceeds 1. below the point where ground conductors are attached. Clamping the meter around the ground rod and below the common attachment point should allow an accurate ground resistance reading of the rod. Therefore.27 shows a circuit diagram for a multigrounded system with the clamp-on tester in place. Because the parallel combination of R1 through Rn is much smaller than Rx.26: Clamp-On Ground Resistance Tester.

This tester is similar to the three-point tester and can be used to measure the resistance-to-ground of a ground electrode. The cooperative may have soil resistivity data from tests C1 P1 P2 C2 C1 b P1 P2 Small-Sized Electrodes a a a FIGURE 5. . soil has an electrical resistivity. Figure 5. in ohm-m = Resistance. the test probes must have good soil contact.29 also illustrates these connections. It is important that all test probes are driven to the same depth. The two current terminals (C1 and C2) connect to the two outer test probes. After the engineer collects soil data from different areas. four-point tester has four terminals instead of three (see Figure 5. conducted at substation sites or along transmission lines. As tester to measure evident from the name. system. measuring values as low as 0.7. However.29). The four-point Use a four-point tester is more sensitive than the earth resistance three-point tester. The tester injects a current into the two outer probes and measures the Equation 5. A depth of six to 18 inches is acceptable. The tester continues the test setup by placing test leads from the four terminals to the four test probes. Equally important. in meters Soil resistivity directly affects the resistance-to-ground of a grounding electrode. then soil resistivity meaadequate grounding surements may be necessary.7 ρ=R× where: ρ R A L A L = Soil resistivity. Loose test probes can lead to erroneous readings C2 because of high probe resistance. the threepoint tester will not measure soil resistivity.01 ohms. It will probably become apparent that each different soil type present in the service area has a relatively narrow range of resistivity.29. Four-Point Meter Measuring soil resistivity requires use of a fourpoint earth resistance tester. The electrical resistivity is the resistance of a unit cross-sectional area of soil per unit length and is expressed by Equation 5. If Knowing the soil the cooperative engineer does resistivity helps in not have soil data for the area of underground cable installathe design of an tion.1 9 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 SOIL RESISTIVITY MEASUREMENTS In addition to thermal resistivity (discussed in Section 4 of this manual). the soil resistivity. Measuring soil resistivity requires that four test probes be driven in the ground. Knowing the soil resistivity for a particular site allows the engineer to design adequate grounding for the underground cable system. in meters2 = Length. The two potential terminals (P1 and P2) connect to the two inner test probes. in ohms = Cross-sectional area.29: Setup for Soil Resistivity Test. The test probes must be equally spaced and in a straight line as shown in Figure 5. These approximate values can be used instead of measuring the soil resistivity for every underground system that is to be installed. he may be able to assign approximate resistivity values throughout the service territory.

5: Soil Resistivities for Different Soil Types and Geological Formations. TABLE 5. then the resistance reading is the average resistivity to a depth of five feet.000 Very High Sand and Gravel in 10. The resistance value shown on the four-point tester is a function of the apparent soil resistivity. Adapted from IEEE Standard 81-1983. if the test probe spacing is five feet. he should first check to see if test probes are secure in the ground. Using these two values. To get a complete soil profile. refer to IEEE Standard 81-1983. the tester determines the resistance. If the tester still shows high probe resistance. Moisture and chemical content. If an operator gets this indication. as shown in Table 5. Different soil types have different resistivity values. the operator needs to drive rods deeper or relocate one or more rods. This resistance value is what the operator reads when making soil resistivity measurements. (For more information on this test method. Elements Affecting Soil Resistivity Several elements affect soil electrical resistivity.000 High Coarse 3. Temperature. Earth Resistivity (ohm-m) 1 Sea Water Loam 10 Unusually Low Clay Chalk 30 Very Low Chalk Trap Diabase 100 Low Shale Limestone 300 Medium Sandstone Shale Limestone Sandstone 1. including the following: • • • • Soil type. This apparent resistivity is the average resistivity for a block of soil with a depth equal to the spacing between the test probes. If test probes are loose.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 9 7 5 corresponding potential drop between test probes P1 and P2.) Most four-point testers give indication of high probe resistance. For example. and Seasonal variations. Test accuracy will not be affected if the probe spacing significantly exceeds the diameter of the wetted area.000 Unusually High Surface Layers Dolomite Sandstone Quartzite Slate Granite Gneiss Cretaceous Tertiary Quaternary Carboniferous Triassic Cambrian Ordovician Devonian Precambrian and Combination w/Cambrian Quaternary .5. the operator needs to take measurements at various probe spacings. then the operator needs to pour water around each test probe to help reduce the test probe resistance so measurements can be made.

Adapted from Biddle Instruments.000 Soil Resistivity (Ω-m) Ω 1. A third element affecting soil resistivity is temperature. As the salt content increases. the earth surface is composed of layers of different soil types. The graph of Figure 5.000 5. soil resistivity measurements often show different values at different depths. Adapted from IEEE Standard 80-1986. The moisture dismoisture and salt solves the naturally occurring salts in the soil. reduces the soil resistivity. as the temperature drops below freezing. the decrease in resistivity is minimal after the salt content reaches five percent. To illustrate this effect.30: Effects of Moisture on Soil Resistivity.000 5.000 500 TABLE 5. Adapted from IEEE Standard 80-1986. The resulting content decreases electrolyte improves the consoil resistivity. .300 100 50 °C 20 10 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Percentage Salt 0 -5 -15 FIGURE 5. Table 5. 1981. Soil Resistivity (Ω-m) Ω 1. the resistivity decreases. therefore. Temperature Resistivity °F 68 50 32 (water) 32 (ice) 23 14 (ohm-m) 72 99 138 300 790 3.30).6: Effect of Temperature on Soil Resistivity. As the moisture content increases.31: Effects of Salt Content on Resistivity in Soil Containing 30 Percent Moisture.1 9 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 Typically. the soil resistivity increases rapidly. These soil types have varying resistivities. 10.000 500 100 50 Moisture and chemical content dramatically affect soil An increase in resistivity. duction of current through the soil and. This decrease is rapid until the moisture content reaches 20 percent to 30 percent (see Figure 5. However. the soil resistivity decreases. However. 10.31 shows the effect of salt in soil that contains 30 percent moisture.6 shows 40 45 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 Percentage Moisture FIGURE 5. Temperatures above freezing have little effect on resistivity. thus.000 Soil resistivity varies as a result of seasonal changes. The amount of dissolved salt that is present in the soil also affects the resistivity.

The ground resistance of a counterpoise increases if the soil around it freezes during the winter months. A rod that extends into the water table has a more stable ground resistance.8 ρ= 4πaR 2a a 1+ – 2 + 4b2 2 + b2 a a where: ρ = Soil resistivity. Likewise.8 reduces to ρ = 2πaR The resistivity values can be plotted against the test probe spacings.8. If the soil resistivcompare grounding ity is unknown. Therefore. Equation 5. the engineer can compare the ground resistance of several ground electrode configurations: • A single ground rod. in meters b = Depth of test probe. in ohm-m R = Resistance readings. the engineer can get this insystems. This information is needed to determine an appropriate soil model. Equation for Deriving Resistivity from Resistance Reading The measurements made with a four-point tester are resistance values. Table 5. Resistance increase caused by loss of soil moisture is a major concern. This change produces a proportional change in the ground resistance of the counterpoise. A reduction of moisture content from 25 percent to 15 percent can cause electrode resistance to triple. and • Counterpoise.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 1 9 9 5 how temperature affects the resistivity of sandy loam that contains 15. Because seasonal changes can affect soil resistivity. The ground resistance of an electrode is a function of the soil resistivity and the electrode geometry. As a result. Extending ground rods into an area with permanent moisture content can minimize this problem. formation from a soil resistivity test as described earlier in this section. SIMPLIFIED DESIGN OF GROUNDING SYSTEM USING RESISTIVITY DATA Resistance-to-ground (ground resistance) calculations can be used when a grounding system is designed. the summer months are often dry. If the loss of moisture increases the soil resistivity by 50 percent. As the soil around the grounding electrode dries out. then the ground resistance of the electrode will also increase by 50 percent. . Soil temperature and moisture content usually vary throughout the year. The counterpoise should thus be buried below the frost line.2 percent moisture. ground rods should be driven to a depth that is below the frost line. In some areas. in meters If the depth (b) of the probes is small (five percent of the probe spacing). These changes must be considered when the grounding for an underground system is designed. • Groups of ground rods. This information will help the engineer design a grounding system that performs effectively throughout the year. soil resistivity also varies throughout the year. These resistance values must be converted to soil resistivity measurements using Equation 5. its ground resistance increases. Equation 5.6 shows that the soil resistivity increases from 138 to 300 ohm-m at the freezing point. At the freezing point. A counterpoise with a ground resistance of 38 ohms in the summer could increase to 83 ohms when the ground freezes. it is important to note the temperature and the soil moisture content of the soil at the time of a four-point soil resistivity test. the resistivity more than doubles. in ohms a = Spacing between test probes. the calculations require Use ground resistance knowledge of the soil recalculations to sistivity. Using these calculations.

1936) provides the ground resistance of a single rod. the area (A) occupied by the group of rods and a coefficient (K1) affect the equation. in ohm-m Ground rod length.10. The coefficient K1 is related to the geometry of the rod group and can . in ohm-m Ground rod length.11. in ohm-m Ground rod length. use Equation 5. The ground resistance of two ground rods in parallel separated by a distance. in ohm-m Length of counterpoise. in meters2 K1 = Constant obtained from Figure 5. in ohms Soil resistivity.32 n = Number of rods in the group where: R ρ L a s Equation 5.14 R= where: R ρ L a d = = = = = ρ 2L In –1 πL ad The most simple grounding electrode is a single ground rod. in ohms Soil resistivity. s. in ohms Soil resistivity. In addition to individual rod geometry. 1936).11 R= ρ 4L 4L s s2 s4 + In + In –2 + – 2 4πL a s 2L 16L 512L4 = = = = = Ground resistance. in meters Equation 5. in meters Depth of counterpoise burial.10 and 5.9 (Dwight.11 (Dwight. is given in Equations 5. in meters Distance between ground rods. If the spacing between the rods is greater than the rod length (s > L).13 R= ρ 2L L 2d d2 d4 + In In –2 + – 2 + 4 L 2L 2πL a d L = = = = = Ground resistance. in meters Area occupied by ground rods. Ground resistance. in meters Equation 5. use Equation 5. in meters Ground rod radius. in ohms Soil resistivity. in meters Ground rod radius. in meters Ground rod radius. in ohm-m Length of counterpoise. in meters Radius of counterpoise.2 0 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 Equation 5. in ohms Soil resistivity.12 R= where: R ρ L a A ρ 4L 2K L In –1 + 1 n – 1 2πnL a A = = = = = 2 Ground resistance. in meters Ground resistance. in ohm-m Ground rod length. If the spacing is less than the length (s < L).9 R= where: R ρ L a = = = = ρ 4L In –1 2πL a Equation 5. in meters Radius of counterpoise. in meters Depth of counterpoise burial. in meters The equation becomes more complicated for groups of ground rods that are connected. in meters where: R ρ L a d where: R ρ L a s Equation 5. in ohms Soil resistivity.10 R= ρ 4L ρ L2 2 L4 1– 2 + In –1 + 3s 4πL a 4πs 5 s4 = = = = = Ground resistance. in meters Distance between ground rods. in meters Ground rod radius. Equation 5.

00 0.4.32 or from the associated equation. Equation 5. the length of the counterpoise is often much greater than the depth of burial.5 (.40 1.9: ρ 4L In –1 2πL a R= where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 8 ft (0.)(0.05x + 1. Equation 5.44m In –1 = 96. Equation 5. provides a suitable approximation of the ground resistance value.14.0095m R= be obtained from the graph of Figure 5.) = 0. As the separation increases. Examples 5.15 1. and 5. However. 1936).5.05x + 1.30 1.95 0.4: A Single 8-Foot × 3/4-Inch Ground Rod Driven in Soil with a Resistivity of 250 Ohm-M. In underground system applications. 250 Ω-m 4 × 2.3048 m/ft) = 2. 1954).Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 0 1 5 1. For these cases.8Ω 2π(2.20 B Curve C: For Depth h = K1 = –0. Adapted from IEEE Standard 80-1986.90 0.05 C 1.44 m a = .32: Coefficient K1 for Ground Resistance Calculations.13 provides the ground resistance of a counterpoise (Dwight.0095 m By substituting the values.12 provides the ground resistance of a group of ground rods (Schwarz.41 Curve B: For Depth h = K1 = –0. Increasing the number of ground rods is one way to decrease the ground resistance. 5.6 illustrate how the ground resistance of a grounding system changes for different configurations.0254 m/in.10 1.13 Area 6 Area 10 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Length-to-Width Ratio.44m) 0. a simpler equation. use Equation 5.35 1.75 in.04x + 1.85 Curve A: For Depth h = 0 K1 = –0. . X FIGURE 5. To calculate the ground resistance.25 A 1. the spacing between the ground rods affects how much the ground resistance decreases. the ground resistance decreases.20 Coefficient K1 1. EXAMPLE 5.

10: R= ρ 4L P L2 2 L4 In –1 + 1– 2 + 3s 4πL a 4πs 5 s4 where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 8 ft = 2.52m)4 In + In –2 + – + = 57.52 m The addition of a second rod reduced the ground resistance from 96.88m)4 4π(2.52m (1. Because two identical rods have the same ground resistance.375 in. The distance between the rods can be increased until there is no mutual resistance effect.44 m By substituting the values. EXAMPLE 5.44m 4 × 2. R= 250 Ω-m 4 × 2. the parallel resistance is one-half the single rod ground resistance.) = 0.5: Two 8-Foot × 3/4-Inch Ground Rods Placed 5 Feet Apart.8 Ω By substituting the values.2 0 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 EXAMPLE 5.4 Ω 2 This is not a significant improvement from the 52.0254 m/in. For the two eight-foot by 3/4-inch ground rods.(0. the limiting ground resistance value is 1 R = R1 2 where: R1 = 96.0095m 1.44m) 0.(0. .44m) 0.) = 0.3048 m/ft) = 1. R= a = 0. use Equation 5.3048 m/ft) = 4.0254 m/in.0095 m s = 16 ft (0. Because the spacing is less than the ground rod length (s < L).52m 2 × 2.0095m 4π(4.7 to 52. If the two rods are spaced further apart.44m 1.7 ohms.44m)4 a = 0.7Ω 4π(2. use Equation 5. the ground resistance becomes even lower.2Ω 2 3(4.375 in.8 Ω) = 48.44m)4 250 Ω-m 4 × 2.44m)2 In –1+ 1– + = 52.44 m By substituting the values.6: Two Rods Spaced 16 Feet Apart.44m 250 Ω-m (2.8 to 57.11: R= ρ 4L 4L s s2 s4 In + In –2 + – + 4πL a s 2L 16L2 512L4 where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 8 ft = 2.88m) The increased spacings reduced the ground resistance from 57.2 ohms. 1 R = (96.44m)2 512(2.52m)2 (1.44m 16(2.88m) 5 (4.2 ohms at a 16-foot spacing. For a spacing of 16 feet. approximately 40 percent.0095 m s = 5 ft (0.88 m 2 (2. The ground resistance of the two rods is equal to the parallel combination of two individual rods.

0095m (1.12. for exlayer has a lower resistivity than the upper layer ample. R= 250 Ω-m 4 × 2. ground resistance. A smaller area results in a higher ground resistance. Using Equation 5.9. then driving a rod into the lower layer redecreases the ground resistance by 20 percent.44m) 2 In –1 + 4 – 1 = 42. 250 Ω-m 4 × 2.44m 2(1.88m)2 Increasing the Increasing the number of ground number of ground rods decreases the rods decreases the ground resistance.375)(2. (See Example 5.44m) 2 In –1 + 4 – 1 = 29. then Soil resistivity influences ground resistance. Using a grouping of four ground rods gives a more dramatic improvement.8.5 Meters) FIGURE 5.8Ω 2π(4)(2. its ground resistance will differ ground resistance. 16 Feet (4. If the lower tional to soil resistivity.375 (obtained from Figure 5. Here. R= n = 4 K1 = 1.7: Group of Four Rods.32) A = (4.52m)2 5 Feet (1.0095m (4. a 20 percent decrease in soil resistivity does.9 Meters) where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 2.9 Meters) R= ρ 4L 2K L In –1 + 1 n – 1 2πnL a A 2 16 Feet (4.0095 m By substituting the values. The soil resistivity test may Another way to reduce show that the soil has two layground resistance is to Increasing the rod ers with different resistivity increase the rod length. For example.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 0 3 5 EXAMPLE 5.2Ω 2π(4)(2. consider the arrangement of Figure 5.44 m a = 0.44m 2(1.44m) 0.88 m)2 FIGURE 5.375)(2.) 5 Feet (1. use the layout of Figure 5. If a driven rod is in (See Example 5.5 Meters) . length decreases the values.44m) 0. For this example.) contact with the two layers. Ground from the ground resistance in resistance is directly proporhomogeneous soil.33. The area occupied by the rods also affects the ground resistance.34: Grouping of Four Ground Rods with 5-Foot Spacing.33: Grouping of Four Ground Rods with 16-Foot Spacing.34. duces the ground resistance of the rod.

Equation 5.9 with ρ = 100 ohm-m: R= 100Ω-m 4 × 2. Table 5. in meters Calculating the effect of a two-layer soil requires the use of an apparent soil resistivity. the resistance of a single eight-foot rod changes from 96. The apparent resistivity.3048 m/ft) = 4.4) to 38. ρ2H + ρ1(L – H) L(ρ1ρ2) This table shows how difficult it is to achieve a low ground resistance with a single eight-foot ground rod. as defined in Equation 5. 16-foot. in Equations 5. in ohm-m ρ2 = Soil resistivity of bottom layer.12. Use Equation 5.8 Ω R100 = 96.32m) 0.4) to 54. . Soil resistivity often decreases substantially between the surface and a depth of 24 feet. ρa.0095m R= where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 16 ft (0.0095 m By substituting the values. Ground Resistance R (ohm) 10 15 25 50 75 100 500 1.7: Ground Resistance in Varying Soil Resistivities.7 ohms.88 m a = 0. ρa. If the ground rod length is 24 feet (7.32 m).44m In –1 = 38. The first uses Equation 5.300 2.0095m R= This is a reduction of 61 percent.9 through 5.8 (Example 5. then the following results: 250Ω-m 4 × 7.7 shows the ground resistance of a single eight-foot by 3/4-inch ground rod driven in varying soil resistivities.88m) 0. If the soil resistivity is 100 instead of 250 ohm-m.32m In –1 = 38.15 is valid only when the ground rod is in contact with both soil layers (IEEE Standard 80-1986). This resistance can be calculated in two ways. and 24-foot rods.15. in ohm-m L = Ground rod length. replaces the soil resistivity.2 0 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 EXAMPLE 5. TABLE 5. However.0Ω 2π(4.44m) 0.88m In –1 = 54.9 to calculate the ground resistance of a 16-foot ground rod: ρ 4L In –1 2πL a EXAMPLE 5.8 Ω 100 = 38. a 44 percent reduction. in ohm-m ρ1 = Soil resistivity of top layer.7 Ω 250 The second method calculates R based on its direct proportionality to ρ: R100 100 Ω-m = R250 250 Ω-m R= Doubling the rod length decreased the ground resistance from 96. ρ.0 ohms.600 Equation 5.7Ω 2π(2.2Ω 2π(7.15 ρa = where: ρa = Apparent resistivity.9: Change in Soil Resistivity. This is generally not the case.8: Increase in Rod Length. 250Ω-m 4 × 4. this calculation has used the assumption that the average soil resistivity is constant for eight-foot.0095m where: R250 = 96.8 (Example 5.000 Soil Resistivity (ohm-m) 26 39 65 130 195 260 1. in meters H = Thickness of top soil layer.

a 16-foot (4.44 m a = 0.0095m R= The presence of a more conductive lower layer reduced the ground resistance of a 16-foot rod to 14.88 m) rod changes ρa to ρa = 4.10: The Effect of a Tw0-Layer Soil with a Top-Layer Resistivity of 250 Ohm-M and a Bottom-Layer Soil Resistivity of 50 Ohm-M. .9: R= In 4L –1 a where: ρa = 99.88m In –1 = 14.52m) ρa 2πL The value ρa replaces ρ in Equation 5. For example.52 m Substituting the values yields the following: ρa= 2.4Ω 2π(4.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 0 5 5 EXAMPLE 5.88m(250 Ω-m)(50 Ω-m) =66.44m) 0. ρa = where: ρ1 ρ2 L H = = = = ρ2H + ρ1(L – H) L(ρ1ρ2) 250 Ω-m 50 Ω-m 2.6Ω-m 4 × 4.44 m 5 ft (0.52m) + 250 Ω-m (4.44m In –1 = 38.6 Ω-m (50 Ω-m)(1.9 yields the following: 66.4 from 54.0 ohms.0095 m Substituting the values yields the following: R= 99.4) to 38.0095m Rod contact with the more conductive lower layer reduced the ground resistance of a single eight-foot rod from 96.15.3048 m/ft) = 1.88m – 1.52m) Equation 5. as calculated in Example 5.44m – 1.8.44m(250 Ω-m)(50 Ω-m) =99.7 Ω-m L = 2.88m) 0.6 ohms. Using Equation 5.52m) + 250 Ω-m (2.7 Ω-m (50 Ω-m)(1. The top-layer thickness is 5 feet.7Ω-m 4 × 2. The lower layer is even more effective if a longer ground rod is driven.6Ω 2π(2.8 (Example 5.

then. a 100-foot counterpoise will have a ground resistance of: R= 100Ω-m 2 × 30.292 in.96m In –1 = 8.13.96m) (0. then 250Ω-m 2 × 60.48m 30.0037m)(0.48m) (0.11). .52 m 250Ω-m 2 × 30.)(0.48m) 0.48m) (0. or about 11 percent.52 30.0037m 1. 5. the ground resistance decreases. If the soil resistivity is 100 ohm-m instead of 250 ohm-m.13) is another element that affects ground resistance.12: More Conductive Soil.8 ohms (Example 5. if the counterpoise length is increased to 200 feet (60. use Equation 5. A more conductive soil (a lower ρ) also reduces the ground resistance.2 0 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 EXAMPLE 5. (0.52m)2 (1. Because soil resistivity and ground resistance are directly proportional. a 60 percent reduction in ρ produces a 60 percent reduction in R.48m)2 2 × (30.76m) R= Doubling the counterpoise length reduced the ground resistance by 44 percent.0037 m d = 1.76 m 1/2 (0.8Ω π(60. This is a 60 percent reduction from 15.13: Counterpoise Burial Depth.52m)4 In + In –2 + – + = 14.0254 m/in.11.76m) As the length of the counterpoise increases.12. and 5. The burial depth is much smaller than the counterpoise length (d < L).13 calculate the ground resistance of different counterpoise configurations.7 ohms.48 m).8Ω π(30. Therefore.0037 m A more conductive soil reduces the ground resistance.3048 m/ft) = 30.52m (1.48m)4 2π(30. If the burial depth is increased to 60 inches (1. 250 Ω-m 100 ft (0.48 m 30 in. For example.48m Doubling the burial depth decreases the ground resistance by only 1.14: R= where: ρ L d a = = = = ρ 2L In –1 πL ad Examples 5.0254 m/in. EXAMPLE 5.48m In –1 = 6.11: Counterpoise of #2 AWG Conductor Buried 30 Inches Deep for a Distance of 100 Feet.0037m)(0.3Ω π(30.48m 2 × 1.) = 0. using Equation 5. R= ρ 2L L 2d d2 d4 In + In –2 + – 2 + 4 L 2L 2πL a d L where: ρ = 250 Ω-m L = 30.52 m) and the counterpoise length remains at 100 feet (30.0037m)(0.) = 0.1Ω (30.48 m Substituting the values yields the following: R= a = 0. as seen in Example 5. The depth of burial (see Example 5.48m In –1 = 15.96 m). Substituting the values yields the following R= 250Ω-m 2 × 30.76m) EXAMPLE 5.12.

Because some underground installations are protected only at the riser pole. However. and • Cable insulation. Unfortunately. (See Table 5. As the reflected surge propagates back toward the riser pole. a single arrester at the riser can keep voltages below the BIL withstand of 12. consult the references listed at the end of this manual. Overvoltages caused by neutral displacement during line-to-ground faults and voltage regulation are addressed later in this section. Most of the recommendations and protective measures reviewed are based on complicated analyses. underground cable insulation is not self-restoring like overhead insulation because it is not surrounded by air. because equipment BIL does not double as the system voltage doubles. • Switchgear. diverting the surge current to the pole ground conductor.4 kV. fast-front surges. Protection of underground systems served from overhead lines is complex.47-kV cable and equipment. a riser pole arrester need operate only for low-magnitude. Normally.47/7. the doubling effect is transferred throughout the length of the cable. Therefore.47 kV to reduce insulation voltage stress. it is important to provide the proper surge protection. 25-kV systems require openpoint arresters.14 for recommended arrester ratings and locations. Accurate solutions to overvoltage problems often require higher mathematics and sophisticated computer simulations. resulting in reduced protective margins. only the results are given. Analyzing the effect of transient voltages and currents is one of the most complex subjects in distribution engineering. the traveling wave phenomenon points out the problem inherent in protecting underground equipment by locating arresters as close as possible to the protected equipment. A lightning surge traveling down the cable from the overhead line will double in magnitude at the open point as it reflects back on itself. Shunt capacitors are not needed on most cooperatives’ underground feeders. Underground feeders consist of radial taps from overhead distribution circuits. Current-limiting fuses usually do not . Capacitor switching and currentlimiting fuse operation are two other possible surge sources. In theory. OVERVIEW In general. which.) Most cooperatives install open-point arresters on both 12. slow-wavefront lightning currents left on the overhead line after an insulator flashover (Parrish. A typical installation could be a short run of a few hundred feet or a long rural feeder terminated in an open point. In most instances. Overvoltages caused by ferroresonance and possible solutions are presented in Section 6 of this manual. They should be used at 12. Limiting the number and severity of surge voltages will prolong cable life. The methods presented in this manual are approximations and should be viewed as such. bypassing the arrester entirely. the pole top will flash over. But voltage doubling plus reflections on the cable requires a riser pole arrester with the best available characteristics.94/14. For high-current-magnitude. usually at a transformer. Historical outage data at 25 kV has shown additional dead-front arresters are justified at cable taps and additional transformer locations. An underground cable fault is much more expensive to locate and repair than a fault on an overhead line. Installed cable is the most significant cost of an underground system. will be cleared by a recloser operation. For more information on why certain recommendations were made. The critical case generally involves lightning striking the line within one span of the riser pole.2 kV and 24. 1982). Several sources of transient overvoltages of system origin must be considered when surge arresters are applied. Dead-front arresters now available will reduce reflected surge voltages by up to 50 percent.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 0 7 5 Underground System Surge Protection Protecting underground distribution from lightning surges originating on overhead lines is crucial. the equipment that must be protected from lightning surges on an underground system is the same as on an overhead system: • Transformers. Normal practice is for a cable run to have pad-mounted transformers connected along its route. most of the time. These sources do not cause severe extra duty for arresters applied for underground lightning protection because of their infrequent occurrence.

which adds a sharp spike to the protective characteristic. a gap requires a considerably higher voltage to break down. Parrish.35: Types of Arresters and Their Construction. MOV designs are more efficient and offer better protective margins at the same voltage ratings. by D. Manufacturers generally no longer make SiC arresters. which was possible with the discovery of metal oxide as a valve material. For waves with very fast rise times. Continued research to develop a better arrester that would protect large power transformers led to the gapped silicon carbide (SiC) valve arrester. However. the device had to be able to interrupt an arc at a current zero. but helps to reduce outages caused by arrester failures. Line Connector External Gap Porcelain Insulator Gasket seal Porcelain Housing Compression Spring Valve Element Gap Assembly Gasket & Seal Ground Connector Externally Gapped Silicon Carbide Valve Arrester Line Connector Gasket Seal Gap Assembly Valve Elements Porcelain Housing Compression Spring Ground Lead Disconnector Ground Connector Internally Gapped Silicon Carbide Valve Arrester Gapless MOV Arrester FIGURE 5. The only real difference besides valve element composition is the gap assembly in the SiC unit. the overvoltage protection benefits of not using external gaps for riser pole applications far outweighs any perceived outage rate reduction. both of these sources can be minimized by proper equipment selection. It was one of the most significant advances in the history of overvoltage protection. Any discussion of lightning protection requires some knowledge of lightning phenomena and its electrical characteristics. Metal oxide and SiC distribution arresters have some similarities in construction (see Figure 5.E. when hit with steep-front waves. gapped designs exhibited an undesirable characteristic. SURGE ARRESTER SELECTION Surge Arrester Types The first device connected between line and ground to protect power circuits from lightninginduced overvoltages was the simple air gap. an NRECA publication entitled Lightning Protection Manual for Rural Electric Systems. NRECA Research Project 92-12. Researchers who continued testing SiC arresters found that. offers an excellent starting point and an extensive bibliography for further reading. To prevent breaker operation every time the gap flashed over. only MOV arresters will be considered in later discussions of underground system surge protection. Volumes of literature have been written on the subject since electricity was harnessed for domestic use. The result was the introduction of the gapless metal oxide varistor (MOV) surge arrester in the late 1970s. Figure 5. This need led to the development of the first expulsion arrester.35 also shows an externally gapped SiC arrester. For these reasons. as proven by the wide acceptance of metal oxide technology by electric utilities since the mid-1980s. . Silicon carbide provided so many advantages over previous designs that some pundits said no further improvements in the device were needed. A thorough review of the subject is beyond the scope of this manual. Solving this problem required elimination of the gap.35). In addition.2 0 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 cause harmful voltage levels because of circuit impedances and the nonlinear magnetizing impedance of pad-mounted transformers. The external gap will increase the rated sparkover voltage of an arrester. While this was an important factor with silicon carbide arresters.

ment failures. with a very nonlinear volt-amBecause increased protective pere characteristic. failure of the ground lead disconnector to operate properly will affect only the underground feeder. Source: Kershaw. 1989. Gaibrois. The ingredients are better protective SiC and MOV arresters. and Stump.8 lists the maximum discharge voltage from zinc oxide (ZnO). and Riser Pole MOV Arresters. external gaps should not be used The 60-Hz leakage current is in the low milli-amon MOV arresters for cable circuit protection. HD = Heavy Duty RP = Riser Pole . Note. the MOV (Kershaw. 8 × 20 µs bined with a variety of other discharge current wave.* Arrester Rating kV rms 9 10 18 21 Maximum Discharge Voltage for 8 x 20 µs Discharge Current Wave (kV Peak) HD SiC (20 kA) 40 45 81 94 HD MOV (20 kA) 34 37 68 79 RP MOV (20 kA) 27 29 53 62 Riser pole arresters represent a small percentage of the total arrester population on a system and should not contribute significantly to extended outage times. Gaibrois. Gapless MOV Arrester In an MOV arrester. The sharp knee of the voltDischarge Voltage ampere curve means that the disks go into conduction at a precise voltage level and stop conducting when the voltage drops below that level.36: Comparison of Nonlinear Characteristics of SiC and MOV 5.36. therefore. which shows the extreme nonlinearity of Valve Elements. without allowing hundreds of amperes Follow Current Current of power follow current to flow. The materials to determine the first two arresters are standard electrical characteristics of the MOV arresters have heavy-duty distribution class varistor. margins can extend cable life and reduce equipThe MOV valve elements are very nonlinear. Because most underground risers are fused ahead of the lightning arrester.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 0 9 5 TABLE 5. They are then fired do SiC arresters. not needed to interSilicon rupt power follow current after a current surge Carbide Normal Line-topasses through the arrester. The overhead circuit will not suffer an outage in a properly coordinated system. Voltage *Characteristics shown are for Cooper Power Systems arrester types EL. The nonlinear characteristics of SiC and Current MOV valve elements are compared in Figure FIGURE 5. and Stump. The first mixed and then pressed third is a special MOV arrester into disks at extremely high characteristics than with better characteristics depressure.1 Amp 100–500 Amps 1–100 kA tion. This valve element property represents a significant advantage over Leakage Current SiC technology in equipment overvoltage protec< 0. 25ºC MOV A series gap is. The MOV arrester Neutral Voltage 75ºC eases out of conduction after the surge voltage Power 125ºC Surge passes. pere range at normal line-to-ground voltage. The benefits of not using an external gap far outweigh any perceived reduction in quality of service that might occur. and AZR400. The MOV also eases into conduction without producing a sharp voltage spike at the start of a lightning surge. which eliminates the need for a series gap to insulate the arrester from ground. veloped especially for riser in a kiln into a ceramic resistor pole applications. 1989). MOV. The valve elements or for three MOV heavy-duty distribution class disks are about 90 percent ZnO and are comarresters for a 20-kA. the valve elements are made Table 5. AZL.8: Comparison of Protective Characteristics of Heavy-Duty Distribution Class Silicon Carbide. as does an SiC arrester.

6 1. More valve elements reduce the leakage current during expected temporary overvoltage conditions.0 Time (Microseconds) 10 100 FIGURE 5. The response of an arrester to steep-front waves should be considered in the arrester selection process for cable protection. thus preventing thermal runaway. temporary overvoltages (TOV) are a primary concern when gapless MOV arresters are applied because they cannot tolerate voltages above the MOV valve-on voltage for long periods.and Shunt-Gapped MOV Distribution Arresters. The design provides increased TOV capability and improved protective characteristics over gapless designs.38: Series. Shunt-Gap Module Insulated Terminal Cap MOV Discs Gap(s) Series-Gap Spacer Steel Coil Spring Coil Spring Desiccant Isolator Series-Gap Design Isolator Shunt-Gap Design FIGURE 5. The other uses an increased number of disks for more overvoltage capability.1 1.8 0. Internally Gapped MOV Arresters As discussed in the previous subsection.0 0. A gapless MOV arrester will not exhibit this behavior.8 1.4 0.4 1. Inspection of the curves shows that the increase in arrester discharge voltage under steep-front waves is more severe for SiC than for MOV arresters.38 shows a cutaway view of the two gapped arresters for riser pole applications and the location of the gaps and disks. .2 0 Metal Oxide Varistor Arrester 0. Figure 5. A second MOV arrester quality that makes it better suited for cable protection is its protective characteristic when subjected to current surges with fast rise times. 1982).2 1 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 1. Fast wavefronts of one to three microseconds are not uncommon for lightning strokes. the sparkover characteristics of a gapped silicon carbide arrester will increase for steep-front surges. It is considered by many experts much too slow to accurately model a lightning surge.37: Effect of Fast Rise Times on IR Discharge. Two manufacturers have taken different approaches to solve this problem. One uses a series resistance-graded gap structure and a reduced stack of MOV valve elements.37 illustrates the effects of fast rise time surges for both MOV and SiC arresters as a multiplier of the arrester discharge voltage (Niebuhr. Insulation protection will be reduced accordingly.6 0. Figure 5. A standard 8 × 20 µs current wave is used to represent lightning in arrester testing. Moreover.2 Voltage (Per Unit) Silicon Carbide Arrester 1. Comparing the two gapped MOV arrester designs with a heavyduty gapless design shows that a 20 percent reduction in discharge voltage can be obtained. Spark gaps are then used to short the extra disks during a surge event and give increased protective levels.

The presence overvoltages occur. operatives from considering • Higher temporary overvolttheir use to take advantage of age capability. and increased protective margins and better tempo• Increased thermal capacity. Gap operation is sensitive to ground 7 4 planes in enclosures. Although these designs have been in the field for some time. Dead-front arresters have 8 been in service for a number of years and their 9 10 configurations have been standardized for interchangeability. Semiconducting moulded shield 7. the two different gapped arresters provide the following improvements over a gapless design: . The electric utility industry uses three basic FIGURE 5. Various arrester de• Contamination affecting sparkover level. and switching enclosures. dead-front arrester configurations: According to the manufacturers. and reliable means to connect them to time. application engineers still have a Dead-Front Lightning Arresters few concerns about adding gaps to MOV arresters: Dead-front arresters were developed to solve the major problem inherent in the protection of UD • Gap sparkover variability resulting circuits: locating arresters as closely as possible from erosion. and UD systems. unless this effect is addressed in the overall design of the protection scheme. The advent of gapless MOV arresters 3 eliminated the concern with gap operation and 2 made the development of dead-front arresters feasible for underground equipment protection. In addition to safety considerations required for live-front operation and the added expense of larger cabinets. rary overvoltage capability offered by these designs for specific applications. Typical installations are in padFeatures: mounted transformer enclosures. Ground lead Figure 5. signs and accessories provide convenient.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 1 1 5 Arrester engineers have known about these problem Consider gapped areas for years from experiMOV arresters ence with SiC arresters and early gapped MOV station where temporary class arresters. 3. 1 MOV arresters for underground use are called dead-front arresters because a semi-conducting grounded shield is molded around the insulation and valve elements. the arrester sparkover level will be affected. Operating eye vaults. • Lower discharge voltage of gaps should not prevent cocharacteristics.39. to the protected equipment.39: Dead-Front Arrester Elbow Configuration. Probe 9. entry cabinets. gapped SiC arresters • Stability of internal seals and gaskets in the were used in live-front applications in padpresence of ozone caused by gap operation mounted transformer enclosures with limited inside the housing. Insert interface 10. Grounding eye A cutaway view of a dead-front design mated 4. eco• Changes in arrester characteristics with nomical. Metal oxide valve elements 6. Previously. Rubber insulation 8. 1. success. Locking ring 2. the gapped arrester relies on a spark-gap operation to protect the 6 5 equipment. Stainless steel end cap to a load-break elbow connector is shown in 5.

matching characteristics are not required. Parking Stand Arrester.40 shows 2.2 1 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 1. Because metal oxide dead-front arresters are considered light-duty devices. This arrangement helps reduce transformer faceplate overcrowding. Dead-front arresters load-break elbow connecare applied close to tor. ly to the pad-mounted transformer bushing well. bushing protected equipment. It is used mainly to Dead-front MOV arresters connect directly to a transwith elbow connectors. former bushing. underground arresters may operate at temperatures 25°C higher than overhead arresters. they do not have Dead-Front Elbow Arrester the same protective characteristics as heavy-duty and specially designed arresters for riser pole protection. For comparison. Surge protecments are -40°C to 65°C. Dead-front arresters are the open-point transformer of a loop-feed classified as light-duty arresters capable of passdistribution circuit to park the disconnected ing the following tests: elbow connector. This is an arrester the three types of dead-front arrester designs.11. • 40-kA high-current withstand test. Thus. and underground arresters are designed with discharge voltages approximately 20 to 40 percent higher than arresters used for riser pole applications at Bushing Arrester Parking Stand Arrester the same surge current magnitudes. . Typical use is at dead-front arresters. 3. Figure 5. whereas the temporary tion is provided while increasing operability maximum arrester temperature is 85°C. IEEE/ANSI C62. Their discharge voltages are listed only for current surges FIGURE 5. and load-break bushing insert for mounting direct• 5-kA duty cycle test. The bushing arrester con• 75-ampere. now covers the operating characteristics of enclosure parking stand. and parking stand applications. age classes: 15. Bushing Arrester. The higher operating temperature requirement is intended to address MOV arrester stability at high application temperatures inside pad-mounted transformer enclosures. it is used with arresters are available from a feed-through device or a manufacturers in all three voltfeed-through insert. It is used at the end of a radial circuit The continuous ambient temperature requireor at the open point of a loop. In other arresters. 25. ambient temperatures set by the standard for overhead arresters are -40°C to 40°C continuous and 65°C maximum. and 35 kV. figuration combines an MOV arrester with a long-duration test.40: Dead-Front Surge Arresters. under normal service conditions.000-µs low-current. the IEEE Standard for combined with an insulated parking bushing Metal Oxide Surge Arresters for AC Power Cirfor mounting on a transformer or switching cuits. 2. Therefore. Expected current magnitudes on underground circuits are not as severe as those on overhead circuits because the riser pole arrester operation reduces the surge magnitude on the protected underground cables. Elbow Arrester. This is an and reducing clutter within the MOV arrester used with a transformer.

5 46.5 65.5 20 kA 15.0 34. rent and the total impedance between them. some heavy-duty designs. and whether pressure relief is required.1 123.1 24.9 59.5 23.5 39.6 88.30 17.10 8. the resent industry values compiled from various dead-front arrester can be overloaded. whereas the are substantially longer than protective characteristics repthe normal three-foot elbow arrester lead.3 61.1 58.5 MCOV (kV) 2.00 19. vices depends on the discharge voltage of each 3.5 99. For thermal capacity.3 130.5 105.5 47. protective characteristics. Duty Cycle Voltage Rating (kV) 3 6 10 12 15 18 21 24 27 Equivalent Front-of-Wave (kV)* 13. Coordinate riser pole 1989). surge current carried by the up to 20 kA versus 100 kA for riser pole arrester (Osterhout.7 36. for fast-front incoming surges.3 * Equivalent front-of-wave voltage is the expected discharge voltage of the arrester when tested with a 5-kA current surge peaking in 0.5 72. stanproper current sharing. The total impedance is the cable surge impedThese classifications differ in voltage rating.7 50. the dead-front arrester dard tests.0 87.5 µs.5 13.0 78.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 1 3 5 TABLE 5.0 12. and arrester when subjected to the same surge cur4.3 42.1 32. should see between 10 and 20 percent of the For the most part.40 10. The voltage ratarresters for proper short as possible and using arings and maximum continuous current sharing.0 93.6 86.5 39.00 1.0 67.55 5. Current sharing between the two de2.0 41.3 53. they are considered to be in parallel when subjected to surge Arrester Performance Classes currents. This condition can norTable 5.2 31. especially manufacturers. Station.6 21.3 55.9 lists typical ratings and dead-front mally be achieved by keeping and characteristics for deadthe riser pole ground leads as front arresters. If the riser pole leads standard values.4 104.2 27.8 46.0 69.4 Discharge Voltage (kV) ** 3 kA 5 kA 10 kA 11. Secondary.8 83. Distribution.0 74.70 15.0 96.0 85.0 46.6 36.50 22.2 77.20 12. Intermediate. ceeded.9: Typical Electrical Ratings and Characteristics of Dead-Front Surge Arresters.2 56.3 70. Proper coordination is required to enThere are four basic classifications of lightning sure the larger riser pole arrester takes the bulk arresters: of the surge current so the discharge capacity of the lighter duty underground arrester is not ex1. ance plus the ground leads of both arresters.0 90. When dead-front arresters and riser pole arresters are applied on UD feeders.0 78.5 kA 10. the major difference between . ** Maximum discharge voltage for an 8/20 µs surge current.5 103. resters with the same voltage operating voltage (MCOV) are rating.4 26.

Under most conditions. The shift also produces increased leakage current. Increasing normal line-to-neutral voltage above the knee of the leakage-current characteristic Not Required Not Required 16. Arrester Class Characteristic or Feature Approximate Protective Characteristics (at 10 kA)* Distribution (1-30 kV) 3. 1989).7 pu Current Discharge Requirements High Current. the voltage rating must be above the maximum expected line-to-ground voltage at which the arrester will have to discharge a current surge. and Stump. Distribution class arresters are usually used on feeders. The units are also much easier to mount on distribution crossarm structures.11. The material will remain stable as long as a surge event does not increase the temperature to a point where increasing leakage current causes thermal runaway (Kershaw. Because of the thermal properties of metal oxide. and the size and cost of the equipment. taking blocks with better characteristics and placing them in distribution class housings of porcelain or polymer construction results in better protective characteristics at a reduced cost. The duty-cycle test defines the maximum permissible voltage that can be applied to the arrester and still have it discharge its rated current. Various manufacturers have developed what is called within the industry a “riser pole” class of arrester. ND = Normal duty. A larger diameter block reduces IR discharge voltage and greatly increases energy absorption capability and reliability.2 1 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 TABLE 5. protected equipment insulation level. SURGE ARRESTER APPLICATION FACTORS Voltage Rating The voltage rating of an MOV arrester is based on its operating duty-cycle test.0 pu Station (3-684 kV) 2. but their electrical characteristics are kept. Figure 5. The explanation above alludes to an important quality of metal oxide arresters. the maximum voltage will occur on the unfaulted phases of a three-phase circuit during a single-line-to-ground fault. The first three arrester classes can be used on a distribution system because their voltage ratings overlap. the manufacturers have essentially taken intermediate class blocks and packaged them in different housings.10: Comparison of Standard Requirements for Surge Arrester Classifications. whereas intermediate and station class arresters are used in substations.36 shows that the ZnO current characteristic will shift to the right with increasing temperature. In short. MOV heavy-duty distribution class arresters are normally used.1 and C62. they can dissipate current surges at higher system voltages than would be seen under normal operating conditions. the easiest way to distinguish among them is to know the different standard tests performed for each class. These arresters should be strongly considered for any underground application because they provide better protective margins. This class is not recognized by standards.10 lists the tests required by ANSI/IEEE Standards C62. For the protection of underground circuits at riser poles.5 pu Intermediate (3-120 kV) 3. Long Duration Pressure Relief High Current Low Current Transmission Line Discharge Test Required discharge characteristic than a normal-duty distribution class arrester. To obtain better protective characteristics. The distribution class housing surrenders the pressure-relief capability of intermediate class units. Short Duration Duty Cycle 65 kA (ND) 100 kA (HD) 22-5 kA (ND) 20-10 kA & 2-40 kA (HD) 20-75 A (ND) 20-250 A (HD) 65 kA 5 kA 65 kA 10 kA (>550 kV) 50 kA (550 kV) 20 kA (800 kV) Low Current. Table 5. Gaibrois. The greater current discharge requirements of the HD designation inherently mean these arresters will have a lower . HD = Heavy duty each arrester class is the physical size of the disk or block. The proper choice of arrester class depends on the system voltage. Because the various classes tend to overlap.1 kA 400–600 A 40–65 kA 400–600 A * In pu of arrester rating Note. For an MOV arrester to be applied.

80 0.41. rating is set by its the MCOV is based on the nominal system line-to-neutral MCOV. Typical overvoltage curves are shown in Figure 5.50 1. For well-regulated systems.70 MOV arresters is temporary overvoltages.10 most conditions.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 1 5 5 curve for a sustained period will also cause thermal runaway.56 kV for a 12. this TABLE 5. Line-to-Ground Faults Selecting the proper MOV arrester voltage rating is based on experience and on calculated overvoltage values for the unfaulted phases of threephase circuits during a single-line-to-ground 1. thermal runaway will not occur and the arrester will not fail. For arresters on An MOV arrester effectively grounded systems.20 Another consideration in the application of 15 12. 10 8. plus a continuous overvoltage operating factor.55 system voltage (1.11-1987.00 0.40 60-Hz Voltage—Per Unit Arrester Rating 1.00 amount of energy the arrester must dissipate 30 24.05 × 12.40 during the event.65 the next subsection.50 more than its design energy level.47-kV nominal 3 2. such 18 15. A more thorough discussion of MOV arrester voltage rating selection is given in 9 7. and • Voltage regulation.00 cessfully as long as it is not required to dissipate 24 19.30 as the single-line-to-ground fault mentioned previously. Source: ever. For this reason. Prior D Two system conditions that can affect the uty voltage rating selected for a riser pole MOV arrester application are overvoltages caused by: • Line-to-ground faults. HowRatings in (kV) Root Mean Square.1 60ºC Ambient 1.40 The standard voltage rating and MCOV for all distribution class arresters are shown in Table 5.30 1.41: Temporary 60-Hz Overvoltage Capability Curves— Typical MOV Distribution Arrester.11. review the system operating characteristics to deDuty-Cycle Voltage MCOV termine the applicable factor. Similar curves should be considered when No Pr an arrester is subjected to system overvoltage ior Du ty conditions. 12 10. the engineer selecting MOV arresters should ANSI/IEEE C62.90 0. Temporary overvoltage capability curves are published by each manufacturer for its products.10 1. voltage. Operating time above arrester voltage rating is set by the 27 22.11: Metal Oxide Surge Arrester factor is often considered to be five percent.47 kV ÷ 3) under 6 5. Line-to-Ground Faults. .0 10 Permissible Duration (Seconds) 100 1. the selection of an MOV arrester is based on the MCOV applied across the arrester during normal service.000 FIGURE 5. If the overvoltage on the arrester is reduced to its MCOV before it gets too hot.20 1. A metal oxide arrester will operate suc21 17. The MCOV requirement would be 7.

65 kV = 1. with a 9-kV riser pole arrester would lead to about a four percent MCOV overvoltage on the The 1. effective groundthe percentage that insulation strength exceeds ing can be assumed with a reasonable degree of the maximum surge voltage allowed by the accuracy.16 Arrester Rating ≥ (Line-to-neutral voltage) × (Range A factor 1. The maximum calculated voltage is on feeders if 9.35 instead of 1. The calcuthat its rise time to peak is 8 µs with a time-tolated overvoltage is then compared with the MOV half value of 20 µs. The Application of Capacitors on Rural Electric Systems. • Maximum service voltage = when unsure about lightly loaded underground 126 Volts. tral shift exists. The standard lightning curwire size. fault resistance.and 18-kV MOV arresters are inequal to the arrester rating. The Range A factor is 1. surge arrester and its leads.16 represents a safety arrester (120 × 1. The long-term stability of metal oxide then equivalent to 1. effectively grounded systems is shown in Equation 5.25 = 9 kV.42 shows the current arrester temporary overvoltage curves.1 × 60 ÷ 7. not secphases of a loaded circuit. and percent voltage increase on a 12. Voltage Regulation RUS Bulletin 1724D-112. which would lead to the selection of the next higher arrester duty-cycle voltage rating at 12. The same rule is not as conservative for metal Protective Margin oxide arresters unless it is known that the sysThe level of protection provided by an arrester is tem is truly effectively grounded. and arrester sparkstalled on the system. and system impedance. It can be defined as applications with BCN cable.560 Volts.2) doubt.035 pu of factor of 20 percent. The Pick the next higher bulletin does not limit voltage • Minimum service voltage = fluctuations on feeders. With the installation of jacketed cable. or voltage regovervoltage duration.25 times the nominal linevalve elements has been proven at the MCOV. and arrester rating itor operation at light loads. Prior duty 12. When in fault. a transient voltage surge will have to arrester duty-cycle voltage rating should be used occur while the 60 Hz overvoltage due to neu(10 kV and 21 kV). If higher voltages are known over far exceeds the rating. Equation 5. on the arrester will also increase thermal aging.16.200 × 1. calls for maximum service voltages to be no greater than five percent above nominal for Range A voltage limits. meaning earth resistivity. four-wire wye.05 when voltage limits are as follows: .2 1 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 Equation 5. The voltage rating is onds. The problem is that these feeder the maximum voltage rise on the unfaulted overvoltages may be present for hours. some cooperatives are now using a factor of 1.25. primary cables. the next higher to operate. Figure 5. For riser pole called the protective margin.47-kV feeder • Maximum service voltage = 7. The most common application rule for open-wire.2 in Equation 5. This application rule is very conservative for Range A voltage levels must not be exceeded SiC arresters. Insulation strength is effective grounding might not be achieved. ulator malfunction can lead to The equivalent primary voltsystem voltages up to 10 perage values are as follows: cent above nominal without the cooperative’s immediate knowledge. An commonly referred to as the BIL.840 Volts. The calculation for a not at these possible higher voltages.2 × 50 µs. to-neutral system voltage.47-kV system is 7. rent waveshape is an “8 × 20” wave. ground rod spacing.47 and 25 kV (10 kV and 21 kV rather than 9 kV and 18 kV). Capac114 Volts. For an SiC arrester to occur for sustained periods.05 × 1. which is based accurate estimate of the voltage on the unfaulted on the industry standard lightning voltage wavephases can be calculated by factoring in ground shape of 1.16 represents MCOV rating). A 10 • Minimum service voltage = 6.

in kV IR = Arrester discharge voltage.0 × (0. 8 × 20 current surge is 26. which must be added to the discharge voltage to calculate the total protective margin. in kV LV = Lead voltage. Arrester IR discharge voltage for a 10-kA.42: Typical Test Current Waveshape: Sinusoidal Wavefront.4 microhenries per foot (µH/ft). For example. After other elements are considered. Maximum rise rates greater than 75 kA/µs have been recorded.5 kV. Equipment BIL is 95 kV. a heavy-duty MOV riser pole arrester with a 9-kV rating might have a maximum discharge voltage of 24. Research data have shown that the average rise time for a typical lightning stroke. EXAMPLE 5.6 kV/ft will be assumed. Standards recognize that some fast-front surge conditions produce current waves peaking in less than eight microseconds. which is much slower than a typical stroke discharged by an arrester. see the IEEE guide on arrester lead length calculations. For more information on this subject. which is defined as the rate of current increase per microsecond. This current wave produces approximately a 10-kA/8 µs = 1. typical rise times can vary anywhere from 0. it will be shown that the above level of protection is optimistic in most cases. 8 × 20 µs current wave. Probability data from recorded lightning strokes are shown in Figure 5. According to recent data compiled on electrical parameters of lightning return strokes. the change in current magnitude with time is sometimes expressed as di/dt.0 kA/µs gives a voltage of 4. Surge current rise times vary with each lightning discharge.6 kV/ft of lead. Researchers have reported rise times higher than 10 kA/µs for more than 50 percent of stroke currents. A lead voltage of 1. Equation 5. Using a di/dt of 4. This test wave is used to establish comparative IR discharge voltage data shown in catalogs of arrester characteristics.43 and are more representative than the 8 × 20 µs wave. add the L di/dt inductive voltage drop in the arrester leads carrying surge current to the arrester discharge voltage.5 + 2(16) PM(%) = [3.17 PM(%) = BIL –1 × 100 IR + LV where: BIL = Equipment BIL.5 kV when impulsed with a 10-kA. Current (kA) PM(%) = 95 –1 × 100 26.14: Protective Margin Calculation for Riser Pole Application: Industry Standard 4 kA/µs Average Rise Time for Lightning Strokes Assumed. For surges that .Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 1 7 5 I I/2 0µs 10µs 20µs Time 100µs FIGURE 5.25 kA/µs value mentioned above. Comparing the above margin with the 20 percent recommended industry standard shows the installation is more than adequately protected. The inductance of solid wire used for connections is a constant and is typically assumed to be 0.4) = 1. in kV rise time.25 kA/µs average Rate of Rise The standard 8 × 20 µs current waveshape used for testing was intended to represent a typical lightning stroke. is closer to 4 kA/µs than the 1. Assume a 12.47-kV riser pole installation is protected by a 10-kV MOV arrester connected with a two-foot lead.20 –1] × 100 PM = 220% waveform.1 to 30 µs with current magnitudes greater than 110 kA. The protective margin for a cable installation may be calculated using the following basic formula in Equation 5. Recent field tests and recorded data show much greater variation than that represented by the standard.17. As noted earlier in this section. To calculate protective margin.

8 × 20 µs waveshape. The question of what rate of rise to use with the equivalent FOW characteristic is still an open debate among protection engineers. unlike oil-filled equipat half the speed of light. When protective margins are calculated.6-kV/ft inductive voltage drop in The equivalent FOW characteristic for an the series arrester leads. to produce 1. does not increase as the When a traveling wave rise time of the applied surge reaches a point of high impedance such as an voltage decreases. Discharge voltages from surge The insulation strength of arresters travel through a cable cable. depending on experience and the frequency of lightning in the area. referring to Figure gins on 24.12 and 5. To minimize the surge voltage entering a the fact that a surge current with a faster rise time cable. the CWW of a cable is considered reflection doubles the voltage at the open point equal to its BIL for all surge voltage waveshapes. which is assumed while the MOV increase is about 10 percent. fast-front surge conditions put maximum stress on cable insulation. This current waveshape produces a voltage wave across the arrester peaking in 0. The BIL margin percentThe curves show that the IR characteristic of an ages are calculated using the industry standard SiC arrester increases approximately 30 percent. and high rate-of-rise surges produce greater voltages per foot of lead.47-kV systems using three 5. the insulation strength is the Chopped Wave Withstand (CWW). Because FOW characteristics for MOV arresters are higher than standard discharge 8 9 voltages. different arrester types. 10-kA. arrester. For oil-filled equipment. The resulting peak voltage is the value listed in tables of arrester characteristics. It denotes lated. assume a time-to-peak of one microsecond.4 µH/ft gives a lead wire voltage drop of between four and eight kilovolts per foot.37. peak in two microseconds or less.6 µs. arresters be used along use the FOW with lead length voltage of six kilovolts per foot. This coordination.9.5 µs. Voltage doubling on the teristics under these conditions. This increased voltage is more severe for Tables 5. ment. it reflects on itself. For example. some application engineers recommend that FOW protective levels for MOV For fast-front waves. install an arrester with low discharge charto peak than the standard 8 × 20 µs test wave will acteristics at the riser pole. the CWW is 15 calculate protective Lead Length percent higher than the BIL. and along the cable as the incoming and reFor the comparison of various arrester characflected waves overlap.13 compare protective marSiC arresters. an Equivalent cable system must be considered when protecFront-of-Wave (FOW) protective level was derived tive margins of arrester installations are calcuspecifically for gapless MOV arresters. including pad-mounted transformers. The consensus has narrowed the rate down to between 10 and 20 kA/µs. Multiplying by 0.2 1 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 0 17% Percentage Probability That Time to Peak Will Equal or Be Less Than the Time Shown on the X Axis 20 Percentage Probability 40 60 57% 80 100 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Time to Peak (Microseconds) FIGURE 5.43: Lightning Rise Time to Peak. margin.and 12. connected with the produce a higher discharge voltage in an MOV shortest leads possible. characteristic to . The CWW insulation MOV arrester is the arrester discharge voltage withstand is based on a 10-kA surge current for current pulses having a time-to-peak of that produces a discharge voltage that peaks in about 0. For the purpose of insulation open point on a loop.

Surge Voltage Doubled by Reflection.9-kV system.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 1 9 5 Lead = 18” Lightning Arrester Lead = 18” JCN Cable FIGURE 5. 24. In the 24.44 shows an installation that corresponds to the three-foot-lead examples in Tables 5.47-kV system has 20 percent or better margins.12 and 5.5 µs . Inspecting the tables shows that. A rise time of 15 kA/µs will be assumed to produce a six-kilovolt per foot voltage drop in the leads to represent severe fast-front lightning strokes. For fast-front surges. Arrester Data 10 kA IR (kV Peak) Arrester Type Heavy-Duty SiC Heavy-Duty MOV Riser Pole MOV 8 × 20 69 60 48 FOW** 80 66 52 Zero Lead Length 8 × 20 -9 4 30 FOW** -22 5 20 BIL 2 × (LPL + LV) Protective Margin (%)* 1. The IR discharge and lead length voltages are added and then multiplied by two to represent the voltage doubling effect caused by reflections. The other arresters provide no protective margin when lead effects are considered. 0.44: Arrester Lead Length Equal to Three Feet.5-Foot Lead 8 × 20 -12 0 24 –1 × 100 FOW** -30 -17 2 3-Foot Lead 8 × 20 -15 -4 18 FOW** -36 -26 -11 *Protective Margin (%) = LV = lead voltage = feet × 6 kV/ft for FOW LV = lead voltage = feet × 1. the protective margins drop drastically when lead length effects are included. the 12. To provide the greatest protective margins for underground cables. Figure 5. Only the special riser pole MOV can provide this level of protection on the 24. eliminating the arrester lead length entirely results in a 20 percent margin for the riser pole MOV.6 kV/ft for 8 × 20 LPL = Lightning Protective Level LPL = FOW or 8 × 20 for 10-kA IR (kV Peak) **Based on 10-kA current impulse that results in a discharge voltage peaking in 0.9-kV Underground Distribution System: 125-kV BIL Insulation. 18-kV Arresters at Riser Pole Only.13.5 µs. Arrester lead length is the combined line and ground lead length in series with the arrester and in parallel with the cable’s termination. TABLE 5.9-kV system. for the standard 8 × 20 µs waveshape and three-foot leads.12: Protective Margin. keep the arrester discharge path (lead length) as short as possible in all installations. 10-kA Lightning Discharge. This type of wave produces the discharge voltages with kV peaks shown in the Arrester Data FOW columns.

The connection makes the arrester ground lead length zero with respect to the concentric neutral of the jacketed cable.5 Feet.2 2 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 TABLE 5.5 FOW** 42 33 27 Zero Lead Length 8 × 20 36 58 94 FOW** 10 44 76 BIL 2 × (LPL + LV) Protective Margin (%)* 1. Figure 5.0 30.45. 12.0 24.45: Arrester Lead Length Equal to 1. The arrester is mounted between the termination and the pole ground conductor. keep lead length short to increase protective margin. so the pole ground conductor can be carried directly to the base of the arrester. Because no surge current flows in either line or ground leads. Surge Voltage Doubled by Reflection. All arrester line lead is eliminated because the wire carrying surge current through the arrester is not in parallel with the termination.5 µs Lead = 0” Remember.46 shows how arrester lead length can be virtually eliminated by modifying the installation of Figure 5.13: Protective Margin. 10-kA Lightning Discharge. the surge voltage across the termination is limited to the discharge voltage of the arrester and represents the “zero lead length” examples in the tables.6 kV/ft for 8 × 20 LPL = Lightning Protective Level LPL = FOW or 8 × 20 for 10-kA IR (kV Peak) **Based on 10-kA current impulse that results in a discharge voltage peaking in 0.47-kV Underground Distribution System: 95-kV BIL Insulation. Cable Termination Lead = 18” FIGURE 5. Arrester Data 10 kA IR (kV Peak) Arrester Type Heavy-Duty SiC Heavy-Duty MOV Riser Pole MOV 8 × 20 35.45 shows a similar installation except the line connection is taken to the arrester and then to the termination. The easiest way to remember how to make the best connections can be summarized as fol- .5-Foot Lead 8 × 20 27 47 77 –1 × 100 FOW** -9 13 32 3-Foot Lead 8 × 20 20 36 62 FOW** -22 -7 6 *Protective Margin (%) = LV = lead voltage = feet × 6 kV/ft for FOW LV = lead voltage = feet × 1. 9-kV Arresters at Riser Pole Only. Figure 5.

The traveling wave characteristics are determined by the distributed nature of the capacitance and inductance of the line. Hi-Tension News.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 2 1 5 Connect to the arrester first.46: Zero Arrester Lead Length. TRAVELING WAVES ON UNDERGROUND DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS A lightning stroke to an overhead line will cause a transient condition to occur. to minimize lead length. The engineer must recognize the extreme importance of arrester lead arrangement on effective overvoltage protection for underground systems. Lead = 0” Cable Termination Lead = 0” lows. This procedure will ensure the leads are kept as short as physically possible to make full use of the protective margin provided by riser pole arresters (Hubbell/Ohio Brass Co. This rapid voltage buildup caused by the discharge of energy from a charged cloud is not transferred instantaneously to all points on the overhead line or connected cable.. Improper arrester lead arrangement can cancel the advantages of even the most advanced arresters and lead to premature failures on underground systems. the line conductor acts only as a guide for the electromagnetic disturbance and the velocity of propagation is near the speed of light. The calculated value of 984 feet/µs is approximately the speed of light.18 V= 1 ≈ 3 × 1010 cm/second = 984 ft/microsecond LC0 where: L = Inductance. and then to the conductor and ground terminals of the cable termination. V. For overhead lines in open air.18. In fact. 1989). who have final control over this item. Equation 5. Furthermore. then to the cable. The surge movement is in the form of a traveling wave. the engineer must communicate this importance to installation crews. Its propagation speed is also set by line characteristics. Carry the line and ground connections to the arrester terminals first. in Farads per unit length in free space Equation 5. the surge requires a finite time to propagate down the line. in Henries per unit length C0 = Capacitance. For overhead lines. the velocity of wave propagation. is calculated as shown in Equation 5.19 V= 1 3 × 1010 cm/second 984 ≈ = ft/microsecond LC k k where: k = Insulation dielectric constant (typical values from 2 to 4) . FIGURE 5.

0. three components of the wave exist: Two types of cable insulation—TR-XLPE and EPR—are normally used by cooperatives for underground applications.21 may be used to calculate the traveling wave voltages and currents where a line terminates on an equivalent surge impedance. Also depicted in the figthe speed of light on the L and C of the cable. The vedistributed L and C paramelocity in this instance depends ters.3 and 3. Once a traveling wave is initiated. . but through sion or distribution line with approximately half the cable insulation. Waves divide in proportion to the equivalent surge impedance at the junction according to Kirchhoff’s laws. The magnitude of the traveling voltage and current waves is changed at the junction points.47: Representation of Distributed Parameter Distribution Line. which are determined by its represents the charging curinsulation material and physirent produced by the voltage cal dimensions. Equation 5.” voltage. After the incident wave encounters the discontinuity. and midpoint cable taps. The current waveshape is the same as the wave in a cable with a dielectric constant of “k. surge propagation speeds within the two cables are as follows: TR-XLPE: V = 649 ft/µs EPR: V = 568 ft/µs Voltage Surge V L C I C I L C I L C L C V= 1 LC ZSURGE = L C FIGURE 60-ohm range) The line charging current should not be confused with lightning surge current. Therefore. Figure 5. open cable end points. I= ZSURGE = ZSURGE C Therefore. This division gives rise to reflected and refracted (continuing) portions of the incident wave.19 surge as it travels along the shows the calculation for the velocity of the line. The approximate dielectric constants for these two insulation materials are typically 2. If 984 ft/µs is assumed to be the speed of light.47 is the classic electromagnetic wave does not representation of a transmisSurges travel at travel through air. the velocity in cable is 1 V= LkC0 where k is the dielectric constant of the cable insulation. Equations 5. and these parameters are related by the The capacitance of the cable is increased in prosurge impedance of the line: portion to the dielectric constant of the insulation. which in cables. For overhead lines: ZSURGE = Surge impedance = 500 ohms (400. the Figure 5.20 and 5.48 shows the effect of a traveling voltage wave meeting a change in surge impedance at a junction. ure is the current I. it will continue along a line until its energy is dissipated or until a change in surge impedance occurs. which will not flow until a discharge path to ground is 600-ohm range) For underground cables: ZSURGE = 35 ohms (20.2 2 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 For underground cables. respectively. Changes in surge impedance that are important for cable protection occur at overhead/underground connections (riser poles). the velocity in cable is where k V L is the dielectric constant of the cable insulation.

1. 1970). 2. Traveling voltage waves are illustrated in Figure 5. Refracted wave (V2 ). I2 V3.49 shows a traveling wave (in rectangular form for simplicity) approaching a junction point (JP) on impedance path Z1.21 The Refraction Coefficient is Then: V2 /V1 = 2Z2 /(Z1 + Z2) = 1 + K Where: V1. I1 V2. and 3.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 2 3 5 Junction Point (JP) Incident V1 Refracted V2 Reflected V3 Z1 Z2 I1 = V1 /Z1 I2 = V2 /Z2 I3 = –V3 / Z1 V2 = V1 + V3 I2 =I1 + I3 V1 /Z1 – V3 /Z1 = V2 /Z2 V1 /Z1 – V3 /Z1 = (V1 + V3) /Z2 Equation 5. Various surge impedance conditions beyond point JP are shown in the other four views (Kershaw. Reflected wave (V3). The (a) view of Figure 5. I3 Z2 = = = = Z1 Incident Voltage and Current Approaching Junction Point Refracted Voltage and Current Continuing Beyond the Junction Point Reflected Voltage and Current from the Junction Point Equivalent Surge Impedance Beyond the Junction Point (Z2 = Parallel Impedance at all Lines Connected to the Right of the Junction Point) = Equivalent Surge Impedance to Incident and Reflected Waves FIGURE 5.48: Change in Surge Impedance at a Junction Point—Effect on Traveling Voltage Wave. . Incident wave (V1).49.20 The Reflection Coefficient (K) V3 /V1 = (Z2 – Z1)/(Z2 + Z1) = K Equation 5.

while 82% of the wave is reflected back toward the source. An MOV arrester response at an open point presents an interesting case because it is a nonlinear resistance. May also be assumed to model the response at an end-of-line transformer.182 V1 Equation 5. Cable Open-End Point Terminated by Nonlinear Resistance (Gapless MOV Arrester) Until now in the discussion of wave behavior at a junction point.818 V1 Z1 Z2 In this case a voltage wave of 18% of the incident value continues on the cable. FIGURE 5. Refracted (V2).49: Traveling Wave Behavior at Junction Points Terminated with Various Surge Impedances.1Z1 Represents an Overhead Line Dead-Ending at a Riser Pole V1 V1 JP Z1 JP Z2 Z2 Represents equivalent surge impedance beyond junction point V3 V1 V2 (b) Z1 = Z2.1Z1 – Z1 = V1 Z2 + Z1 0.1 V2 = 0.2 2 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 (a)Traveling Wave V1 Incident on Junction Point (JP) on Impedance Path Z1 (e) Z2 = 0. only differences in surge impedance magnitude have been considered. Transformer HV windings represent a small capacitance at transient frequencies. All of the Voltage Is Refracted V3 Z1 V2 Z2 V2 V1 Z1 V1 = V2 Z2 Shows Progression of Waveforms: Incident (V1). however.1Z1 + Z1 V3 = –0.23 (d) Z2 = ∞ Represents an Open Circuit I = 0 at All Times at an Open point V3 V1 V3 = V1 Z2 – Z1 0.22 (c) Z2 = 0 Represents a Ground or Short Circuit V1 V3 Z1 Z2 Voltages Cancel at a Short Circuit V2 = V1 2Z2 2(0. cancelling a like portion of the incident wave. Reflected (V3) Equation 5. Voltage doubling still occurs. The incident voltage wave starts to double as previously described for an open point until the MOV valve elements start to conduct . the reflected wave front would have a different shape.1) = V1 Z1 + Z2 1.

(Figure 5. Engineers should consider using them even on 15-kV systems to reduce overvoltage magnitudes and prolong cable life. until the arrester starts to conduct. the voltage doubles back toward the source. VT. Proper location of dead-front or elbow surge arresters will offer increased protective margins at all points within the underground system. whether caused by tapping a cable or an open point. The percentage of voltage increase over the limited riser pole let-through voltage depends on the IR characteristics of the two arresters. subjecting the entire cable length to the overvoltage. However. The reflected wave. but the reflected voltage is increased by one-half the valve-on voltage of the arrester. this subsection will evaluate several schemes that utilities use. would cause reflections. then travels back . PROTECTION METHODS ARRESTER LOCATIONS The decision of where to place arresters on underground systems for equipment protection is based on how the cable is configured and how its conductor is terminated. The equivalent surge impedance at the discontinuity sets the magnitude of the reflected wave. which adds to the incoming wave. If the cable has one or more open-ended lateral taps. The positive reflection adds about one-half the valve-on voltage to the incoming wave. V1 (Cooper Power Systems. Voltage doubling does not occur. The previous subsection on traveling waves showed that a change in surge impedance. At this point.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 2 5 5 Incoming Wave Before Valve-On V1 V1 At Valve-On V2 VT Valve-On Voltage toward the source superimposed on the incoming wave. but general rules will produce adequate protection for most commonly encountered situations.50). The following seven overvoltage protection schemes will be considered: VT After Valve-On V1 V2 VT V1 Peak Voltage = VT = V2 + V1 Peak V2 Valve-On Voltage Valve-On Voltage FIGURE 5. Voltage at the junction point is then canceled as the negative portion of the wave is reflected upon the incoming wave. The engineer cannot calculate protective levels at each piece of underground equipment without transient analysis software. the excess voltage is short-circuited to ground through the arrester. before wave cancellation starts. At an open point. it is preceded by the positive reflected portion of the wave. the reflected waves added together can produce more than twice the riser pole let-through voltage. V. The peak voltage. The preceding analysis shows that an MOV arrester at a cable open-end point will prevent voltage doubling and transfer of the overvoltage to the sending end of the cable by reflections. 1990). is positive and adds to the incoming wave. V3.50: Traveling Waves at a Cable Open-End Point Terminated by an MOV Arrester. It is also assumed the IR discharge voltage equals the valve-on voltage and remains constant throughout the surge event. To provide an idea of the effectiveness of various protection schemes without doing sophisticated traveling wave analyses. The effectiveness of the schemes will be determined by comparing their protective levels at various locations to the level provided by a single riser pole arrester.

The reflected voltage (VT) appears as a triangular spike that is superimposed on the incident voltage wave and travels back toward the riser pole. The maximum voltage stress that the entire cable and connected equipment can be roughly calculated using Equation 5. Riser Pole and Cable-End Arrester (Figure 5. and an arrester applied at the first transformer on the source side of the open point (third arrester). in kV VRP = Riser pole arrester discharge voltage. Riser pole. it subjects most of the cable run to surge voltages that exceed the protective levels of the arresters at either end of the cable. and an arrester at the tap point. the protective margins for a riser-pole-only arrangement can be nonexistent. Using a specially designed riser pole MOV arrester instead of an SiC design should reduce maximum cable surge voltage (VC ) by 40 to 60 percent. 6. Equation 5.2 2 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 1. arresters must be added to the open-end points. For 25-kV systems with 125-kV BIL using 18. Lateral tapped cable with riser pole and open-end arresters. However. Figure 5.51. 5. The seven protection schemes are shown in Figure 5.or 21-kV arresters.24 VC = 2(VRP + VL) where: VC = Maximum cable and equipment surge voltage.2/12. a single arrester at the riser pole will generally provide adequate protective margins for cable-connected equipment. As the spike returns to the riser pole.25 Equation 5. Riser pole arrester and under-oil arresters at every transformer.5 kA. cable-end. the major contributing factor to cable voltage stress is the doubling of the riser pole discharge voltage. openend arresters. Riser Pole Arrester Only (Figure 5.51. Riser pole arrester and cable-end arrester. in kV VRP = Riser pole arrester discharge voltage. and 7. The peak of the spike is approximately equal to 50 percent of the dead-front arrester discharge voltage at a current level of 1. The maximum system surge voltage is given by Equation 5. do not double as well. if care is taken to reduce arrester lead length. Lateral tapped cable with riser pole. 4. in kV VL = Lead voltage drop. In this case.24 shows that. As system voltages increase to 25 kV. 1) For 15-kV class systems and below.24. 2) Placing an arrester at the open point terminates the cable with a low impedance when the arrester conducts. The dead-front arrester eliminates cable-end voltage doubling and limits the open-point voltage to its protective level. No. unfortunately. equipment insulation levels. Riser pole arrester. Riser pole arrester protecting a cable with a lateral tap. the overvoltages are less than the doubling of the riser pole arrester Equation 5. in kV . in kV VC = VRP + VL + 1 VOP 2 where: VC = Maximum cable and equipment surge voltage.25. in kV VOP = Open point arrester discharge voltage.50 shows that maximum voltages will always occur away from the cable-end arrester. which shows the doubling effect. A reduction of this amount is important when aged insulation is considered or when fast-front surge currents enter the system.5-kV system could lead to cable voltages extremely close to new 15-kV equipment strength (95-kV BIL). in kV VL = Lead voltage drop. 2. The low arrester impedance generates a negative reflected wave that works to reduce the voltage at the open point and along the entire cable length. No. 3. Using a SiC heavy-duty arrester on a 7.51.

Single-Phase UD Feeder Lateral Tapped Cable. Single-Phase Feeder with Lateral Tap Open Point Open Point Riser Pole Plus Cable-End Arrester 3. Open-End Arresters. and Third Arrester 7. Single-Phase Feeder with Lateral Tap Open Point Jacketed Neutral Cable Neutral Tap Point Open Point Riser Pole Arrester Only 2. Single-Phase Feeder with Lateral Tap Open Point Open Point Riser Pole. . Riser Pole. Single-Phase UD Feeder Lateral Tapped Cable with Riser Pole Arrester 5. Cable-End. Riser Pole. Single-Phase UD Feeder Lateral Tapped Cable.51: Arrester Locations.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 2 7 5 1. and Tap-Point Arrester Under-Oil Arrester Open Point Riser Pole Arrester and Under-Oil Arresters at Every Pad-Mounted Transformer FIGURE 5. Single-Phase UD Feeder 4. and Open-End Arresters 6.

Arresters at the end points will also keep the tap-point voltage within reasonable magnitudes. 5) Installing MOV arresters at both open points will reduce their voltages to the protective level of the arresters.51. In most instances. 25-kV system protective margins obtained with this arrester configuration are less than the recommended 20 percent level. The impedance is the parallel combination of the surge impedance of each cable leg. Cable-End. the tap-point voltage was 13 percent higher than the maximum midspan voltage on a radial system under the same conditions (riser pole and cable-end arrester).26. 1987). the most effective location for the arrester is the first transformer on the source side of the cable-end arrester. If protective margins of 20 percent or more are desired. the maximum system surge voltage is limited to the protective level provided by the riser pole arrester (Lat. In one laboratory test. 3) Additional surge protection can be provided by adding a third arrester between the two ends of the cable. The function of the third arrester is to suppress the voltage spike reflected from the cable-end arrester. it sees an equivalent surge impedance of approximately 15 to 20 ohms. The voltage increase can be up to 30 percent more than the voltage doubling normally experienced on a radial cable run protected only by a riser pole arrester.51.26 shows that. No. the multiple reflections and refractions will ultimately lead to an increase in cable-end voltage. Because of the discontinuity. Equation 5. Riser Pole.51.26 VC = VRP + VL where: VC = Maximum cable and equipment surge voltage. Open-End Arresters. Riser Pole. portions of the incident wave will be reflected back toward the riser pole and simultaneously refracted onto the two cable legs. Tapping the cable produces parallel cable runs where surge voltages can propagate independently. No. in kV VL = Lead voltage drop. Simulations and laboratory tests have shown that maximum cable surge voltage will be reduced by 25 percent with the addition of cable-end arresters. and Tap-Point Arrester (Figure 5. Assume a voltage surge enters the tapped system at the riser pole with no other arresters applied. the third arrester can be applied at the next upstream transformer. For limiting surge voltage exposure to a minimum. The maximum system surge voltage with third arrester protection can be calculated using Equation 5. This is due to the shunting effect of the arrester to limit the initial surge as well as the reflected Equation 5. If the first transformer upstream from the open point is fewer than 200 feet away. except for the cable section between the third and cable-end arresters.2 2 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 let-through voltage. 4) Cooperatives sometimes tap a radial cable system to provide service to nearby loads. Lateral Tapped Cable with Riser Pole Arrester (Figure 5. No. where they will again be reflected and refracted. Because of the unequal travel times on the cable sections. they will double and travel back to the tap point. When the two refracted voltage waves reach the respective cable ends. Lateral Tapped Cable. leaving the first unit with reduced protection. When the surge reaches the tap point. Lateral Tapped Cable. in kV VRP = Riser pole arrester discharge voltage. in kV . additional arresters must be added to protect cable and equipment remote from the two end points. and Open-End Arresters (Figure 5. and Third Arrester (Figure 5. The separation distance between the two protective devices must be at least 200 to 300 feet for the third arrester to effectively suppress the reflected wave. Riser Pole. 6) Placing an arrester at the tap point will tend to further reduce voltages along the tapped feeder.51. A tapped configuration will produce higher cable voltages than will a simple radial system because multiple traveling waves can add and subtract in complex ways. No.

47 kV 25 kV Feeder Configuration Radial Radial Arrester Locations Riser Pole Open Point Riser Pole Open Point Third Arrester Near Open Point* Riser Pole Open Points Riser Pole Open Points Tap Point* 12. however. including long cables. Load rejection. The following general conclusions can be drawn from investigations into the effects of cable taps on surge voltage magnitudes: • A primary tap will increase surge voltage magnitudes above levels that will exist without a tap. However. No. The recommended arrester locations given in Table 5. and some will fail. Under-oil arresters are good. which are very expensive to add to existing installations. remain to be seen whether this overall scheme will prove to be a cost-effective approach. however. especially at 25 kV. The recommended voltage ratings are one step above the 9-kV and 18-kV ratings that can be used on effectively grounded neutral circuits that have close voltage regulation (Range A voltage levels). The following examples will show . Experience has shown that the recommendations in Table 5. when compared with a tapped system protected by a riser pole arrester only. However. one must consider the cost to replace an under-oil arrester when it fails. 1988).14 should be used for radial feeders and tapped laterals for conservative underground protection. • The surge voltage magnitude increase will typically be 10 to 30 percent. Line voltage regulator malfunctions. An arrester at the tap point should not be considered as adequate protection for the two open cable ends. Distribution systems are susceptible to longterm overvoltages caused by the following: • • • • • • • • Line-to-ground faults. TABLE 5. Poor voltage regulation.18 pu of nominal line-toneutral system voltage.14 are based on the application of riser pole MOV arresters with 10-kV and 21-kV dutycycle voltage ratings. • Multiple taps do not appear to produce surge magnitudes significantly greater than a single tap (Ros.14: Recommended Arrester Locations. The arresters have to be dead-front or under-oil designs. Besides the riser pole. the higher-rated arresters are recommended to prevent premature arrester failures as the installation ages. some utilities are considering under-oil arresters for every new or replacement transformer installation as a way to prolong cable life. 7) The ultimate surge protection scheme is to provide arresters at every convenient and accessible point on the underground system. Voltage 12.17 pu and 1. It is not possible to consider all factors in an application because they can change for many different reasons. and Other system contingencies. Tests have shown that positive wave reflections can act to more than double the cable-end voltage. The MCOV for these arresters is 1. Circuit backfeed. Replacing under-oil arresters can be very expensive. RECOMMENDED ARRESTER LOCATIONS AND RATINGS The information presented above has shown that many factors affect arrester protective margins. A more definite statement cannot be made unless a specific example is analyzed in detail. possible locations could be tap points. and pad-mounted transformers. Fixed shunt capacitors. It does. • Taps located close to the riser pole tend to produce greater surge voltage magnitudes. Riser Pole Arrester and Under-Oil Arresters at Every Pad-Mounted Transformer (Figure 5. Ferroresonance. sectionalizing points.47 kV 25 kV Tapped Lateral Tapped Lateral *Optional application The lower-rated arresters provide additional protective margin.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 2 9 5 waves.51.

Figure 5. To get flexibility with different arresters and components. 2.2 3 0 – Se c t io n 5 5 H1A H1B Feed-Through Elbow Arrester Elbow Arrester PRACTICAL DEAD-FRONT ARRESTER INSTALLATIONS The introduction of dead-front MOV arrester designs and their accessories for use inside UD enclosures has introduced flexibility into underground system protection. 3. four locations were suggested for the installation of dead-front arresters: To Riser Pole To Riser Pole (a) Two Elbow Arrester and a Feed-Through H1A Elbow Connector Parking Stand Arrester H1B 1. Dead-Front Lightning Arresters.52(c). Figure 5. bushing.52(b) shows a different approach that can be taken at the open-point transformer. purchase only transformers with bushing wells. Cable-End Arrester at Open Point Three configurations can be used for this installation. and parking stand arresters described previously in the subsection. At a tap point. At the first upstream transformer from the open point. The configuration chosen will depend on operating practices and available space inside the pad-mounted transformer cabinet. Figure 5. At the cable end of a lateral tap (radial-feed circuit). Product evolution now allows choices in the selection of optimum protection schemes based on cost and protection levels. The third configuration. This installation takes up the most room on the transformer faceplate. . It uses an elbow arrester and a parking stand arrester to reduce overcrowding by eliminating the feed-through device.52(a) shows an open-point transformer with an arrester attached to each cable end. allows increased operational flexibility and reduces overcrowding by using bushing and parking Elbow Arrester To Riser Pole (b) Elbow Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester To Riser Pole H1A H1B Bushing Arrester Insulating Cap Parking Stand Arrester To Riser Pole (c) Bushing Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester To Riser Pole FIGURE 5.52: Cable-End Arresters at Open Point. In the previous discussion of protection methods and arrester locations. and 4. that using the recommended arrester locations and voltage ratings will result in higher protective margins than those suggested by standards. On the cable end at the open-point transformer between two sections of a loop-feed circuit. The following will describe practical ways to physically connect arresters at all four locations using load-break elbow-type connectors and elbow. The arrangement uses two elbow-type arresters and a feed-through mounted on the parking stand.

Many connection methods can be used. an elbow arrester or a bushing arrester must be connected to the unoccupied terminal.54 through 5. mate a bushing arrester to the source-side cable as shown in Figure 5. H1B H1A X3 X1 X2 Primary Source Alternate Source FIGURE 5.59 shows the desired ways arresters can be applied to two. low-cost approach to establish a tap point. Arrester Upstream from Open Point Two arrester configurations may be used to provide additional protective margins at 25-kV and above by clipping the voltage spike generated by operation of the open-point arrester. Figure 5.60 offers a simple. Operational flexibility is obtained because the open point can be closed by moving the parked cable to H1B without removing the parking stand arrester. have loadbreak switching capability. The bushing arrester on H1A requires less space than an elbow arrester/feedthrough bushing insert combination mounted in the same location. To add surge protection to a two-bushing loop-feed unit.53: Arrester Upstream from Open Point (Third Arrester). Once a cable fault is repaired. an arrester should be added at the tap point as well as on the open points. Figure 5.54: Two Elbow Arresters and a Feed-Through. Tap Point Arrester For tapped lateral feeder configurations 25 kV and above.58 show the five installation configurations discussed above. the elbow connector is easily placed back on the parking stand arrester to reestablish the open point. Lateral Tap Cable-End Arrester For lateral taps off all underground feeders. but the one shown in Figure 5. The cable-to-cable connections can be made by Elbow Arrester To Riser Pole (a) Elbow Arrester on Feed-Through Insert To Open Point H1A H1B Bushing Arrester Elbow Connector To Riser Pole (b) Bushing Arrester Only To Open Point FIGURE 5.53(b).53(a) is a schematic of how an elbow arrester combined with a feed-through bushing insert can be mounted on the transformer faceplate. An elbow arrester or a bushing arrester may be applied.and single-bushing transformers at the end of radial-feed circuits. arresters should be placed at open points to prevent reflections from increasing surge voltages above levels that would exist without the tap(s). For the radial-feed transformer. plus add an arrester. Figures 5.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 3 1 5 H1A Feed-Through Bushing Insert H1B stand arresters. the least-cost application is to add a bushing arrester. To reduce clutter inside the enclosure. .

A simplified schematic of the system is shown in Figure 5. Arrester lead lengths are assumed to be one foot at the riser and three feet at the pad-mounted transformer locations. FIGURE 5. . Only one underground radial with four pad-mounted transformers will be investigated. Dead-front arresters are used at strategic locations for increased protective margins. The three cables are connected together using load-break elbow connectors attached to three terminals of the junction.58: Bushing Arrester on Transformer Upstream from Open Point. H1B H1A X3 X1 X2 Primary Source Alternate Source FIGURE 5.2 3 2 – Se c t io n 5 5 H1B H1A X3 X1 X2 using a four-point load-break junction bolted to the inside surface of a suitable pad-mounted enclosure. H1B H1A X3 X1 X2 H1A H1B X3 X1 X2 Primary Source To Open Point Primary Source To Open Point FIGURE 5. The system is protected by a riser pole MOV arrester with discharge characteristics that are readily available within the industry. Primary Source Alternate Source FIGURE 5. The many calculations were made by a traveling-wave computer program (Cooper Power Systems’ UDSURGE™).56: Bushing Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester. UNDERGROUND SURGE PROTECTION EXAMPLES The five examples in this subsection are based on a typical underground loop feed to a subdivision with an open point between the two laterals. Various surge current waveshapes and magnitudes are used to evaluate the effectiveness of the different recommended protective schemes. An elbow surge arrester is installed on the fourth terminal to complete the installation.55: Elbow Arrester and Parking Stand Arrester.61.57: Elbow Arrester on Feed-Through Insert on Transformer Upstream from Open Point.

15 through 5. and so forth) to be considered. recommended arrester locations can be evaluated on their merits. Tables 5.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 3 3 5 Two-Bushing Pad-Mounted Transformer Single-Bushing Pad-Mounted Transformer H1A H1B H1A Elbow Arrester Bushing Arrester To Tap Point To Tap Point FIGURE 5.61: Typical Underground Subdivision Loop Feed with Open Point. arrester characteristics. Different surge current characteristics are used to illustrate how variable lightning characteristics can affect equipment protective margins. FIGURE 5.60: Tap-Point Arrester. Varying the current rate-of-rise and magnitude and calculating the voltage at all nodes enables most of the variables that go into the protective margin (lightning variability. . for this particular system.000' Elbow Arrester To Riser Pole To Open Point Riser Pole Arrester Protecting Jacketed Cable Underground Lateral: 12. In this way. lead length.59: Lateral Tap Cable-End Arrester (Radial Feed Circuit). Pad-Mounted Enclosure Four-Point Load Break Junction Conduit Surge Voltage Magnitudes Calculated at Riser Pole and the 4 Pad-Mounted Transformer Locations Pad #1 1. reflections.19 summarize the surge voltages calculated by the computer program at the riser pole and the four transformer locations.and 21-kV 3-Foot Leads 400' Pad #2 400' Pad #3 400' Pad #4 Open Point Tap Line FIGURE 5.47 kV and 25 kV Arrester Ratings: 10 kV and 21 kV Total Arrester Lead Length = 1 Foot Dead-Front Arrester Locations Ratings: 10. BIL deterioration.

8 43. Aged BIL.27 PM(%) = BIL –1 × 100 Surge Magnitude EXAMPLE 5. Most protection engineers realize this suggestion does not consider many of the variables mentioned in the previous paragraph and is used mostly on overhead systems.4 88. 10 kV. TABLE 5.2 (104% margin) Note. for aged insulation. Placing the arrester at the end of the cable prevents voltage doubling and keeps a minimum 39 percent margin for aged insulation throughout the entire length of the cable in the worst case. Under these conditions. for the two fast-front. 76 kV.5 54.9 64. Protective margin calculations at any of the other locations on the radial feeder are simple to make.9 36.16: MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.2 88. 4): Arrester Rating. The listed surge voltage magnitudes include lead voltage drop.9 29.15 considers a 12.2 43.6 37. 4): Arrester Rating.9 37. 1 No. Surge Current Characteristics 8 × 20 µs 10 kA 8 × 20 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 50 kA Surge Voltage Magnitudes (kV) Padmount Padmount Padmount No. Table 5.8 (39% margin) Padmount No.4 54. Further examination reveals that. the system is considered adequately protected.1 40.16 is protected with a riser pole arrester and a cable-end arrester.27. Aged BIL.16: MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.1 (-30% margin) Note. ANSI Standards suggest a 20 percent margin for an 8 × 20 µs surge at 10 kA.0 51. high-magnitude lightning surges. To provide added security in underground applications. TABLE 5.7 29. 3 38.2 (99% margin) 41.3 29. 3 50.8 Surge Voltage Magnitudes (kV) Padmount Padmount Padmount No.1 (46% margin) 58.4 Padmount No.15: MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.6 36. many engineers double the current magnitude to 20 kA. If a 20 percent or greater margin is obtained. the margin is reduced below 20 percent and actually becomes negative for the worst case.8 51. 95 kV.9 57. Table 5. 76 kV.2 3 4 – Se c t io n 5 5 EXAMPLE 5. 4 52. . 2 No.5 34. Equipment BIL. 95 kV. 1 No. Equipment BIL. 10 kV. Percent margins in parentheses are for aged insulation BIL.9 (6% margin) 108. Protective margin is then simply as shown in Equation 5. Surge Current Characteristics Riser Pole 8 × 20 µs 10 kA 8 × 20 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 50 kA 26. 10 kV. Percent margins in parentheses are for aged insulation BIL. Cableend arresters are strongly recommended at 12.4 36.6 (83% margin) 43. high-magnitude current surges depicted in the last two rows of the table. 4 28. 2 No.1 56. 10 kV.15 shows protective margins of 46 and 31 percent.4 54.3 Riser Pole 26.7 36.15: MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.47 kV to protect equipment insulation from fastfront.1 87.47-kV system protected by a 10-kV MOV riser pole arrester.5 54. The system in Table 5.7 (74% margin) 54.4 57. Equation 5.0 64. respectively.4 64.2 (31% margin) 71.

3 115.18: MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No. Surge Current Characteristics 8 × 20 µs 10 kA 8 × 20 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 50 kA Surge Voltage Magnitudes (kV) Padmount Padmount Padmount No.0 58.6 119.18: MOV Riser Pole Arrester and Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.0 70. 3 103. Percent margins in parentheses are for aged insulation BIL. The arresters limit the voltage to acceptable levels at both cable ends.5 106.6 Padmount No.8 66. This example reiterates that a riser pole arrester cannot protect a 25-kV radial cable with an open-point termination.1 (18% margin) 90.8 73. Equipment BIL.2 Note. Voltage magnitudes on the interior cable section cause inadequate margins for the 8 × 20 µs. .9 Riser Pole 56.8 91.5 82. 3 79. 2 No.4 89. Surge Current Characteristics 8 × 20 µs 10 kA 8 × 20 µs 20 kA Surge Voltage Magnitudes (kV) Padmount Padmount Padmount No. high-current cases.2 99. 20-kA case and both fastfront. Percent margins in parentheses are for aged insulation BIL.4 (42% margin) Note.9 61.17.5 (-17% margin aged) (4% margin new) 62.6 (-7% margin aged) (16% margin new) 120.18 represents a 25-kV system with arresters located at the riser pole and open point.8 (25% margin) 85. 21 kV. 125 kV. MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.and 20kA magnitudes produces negative margins for aged insulation and less than 20 percent margin for new insulation. Aged BIL.9 98. 1 No.0 120. 4 108.5 107. Equipment BIL. 2 No. The summary of surge current magnitudes for a 25-kV lateral protected by an MOV riser pole arrester rated 21 kV is shown in Table 5.1 72.5 Padmount No. 21 kV. The higher voltages in the middle of the cable are caused by the addition of the dead-front arrester valve-on voltage to the reflected voltage traveling back toward the sending end of the cable. The standard 8 × 20 µs waveform with 10.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 3 5 5 EXAMPLE 5.17.0 75. 125 kV. 21 kV. refer to the earlier explanation of traveling waves. EXAMPLE 5.6 77. TABLE 5. 100 kV. 4): Arrester Rating.17: MOV Riser Pole Arrester: Arrester Rating.4 90. TABLE 5.2 (1% margin aged) (26% margin new) Riser Pole 55. For further information. 4): Arrester Rating.8 (10% margin) 98. 100 kV. 4 57. 1 No. 21 kV. Aged BIL. The example in Table 5.

the neutral circuit provides a low resistance path to ensure fast operation of protective devices.0 57. Arrester leads.5 (12% margin aged) (40% margin new) Padmount No.0 71. 2. 125 kV. Some protection engineers recommend riser pole and open-end arresters at 25 kV. .5 64. When a riser pole arrester conducts.9 61. TABLE 5. 4. the rod’s 60-Hz resistance value. 7.3 89. 3 cancels the valve-on voltage spike from the open-end arrester. The neutral circuit includes the JCN and all connections to it. or essentially equal to. 1 64.19 shows the addition of a dead-front arrester to the next transformer upstream from the open point. Summary and Recommendations 1. 4) and Dead-Front Third Arrester (No. and all connections.0 58. 21 kV. Percent margins in parentheses are for aged insulation BIL.2 3 6 – Se c t io n 5 5 EXAMPLE 5.) To protect against these lower probability events.4 89. 6.7 67. However. Under fault conditions. The grounding circuit is made up of ground electrodes. 100 kV. The three arresters working together provide acceptable protective margins along the entire cable length. The example in Table 5. 3 57. the three-arrester scheme is recommended for underground installations.6 68. 21 kV.3 Padmount No. Surge Current Characteristics 8 × 20 µs 10 kA 8 × 20 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 20 kA 1 × 50 µs 50 kA Surge Voltage Magnitudes (kV) Riser Pole 55.0 (47% margin) 69.7 Padmount No. 3): Arrester Rating. It is a conservative approach that balances increased arrester costs against increased MOV arrester and cable life.9 (39% margin) 70. ZSURGE is defined as the ratio of the peak voltage to current on the rod caused by a lightning discharge.7 89. 3): Arrester Rating. The earth should never be used as the only path for the return of normal load current. lightning surge current flows on the following components: a. field tests have shown fast-front high-magnitude surges can occur 20 percent of the time (see Figure 5. 4 57. It also prevents dangerous touch potentials on equipment cases and frames. A two-arrester protection scheme is adequate for most lightning conditions. 5. 4) and Dead-Front Third Arrester (No. Equipment BIL. The grounding system consists of the grounding and neutral circuits. 2 61.2 (55% margin) 68.19: MOV Riser Pole Arrester Plus Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No.3 Note. The return current path must be a continuous metallic circuit along the entire route of energized conductor(s). Aged BIL. The purpose of the grounding system is to maintain all points connected to it at earth potential under various conditions. This arrester at transformer No.2 66. 3.19: MOV Riser Pole Arrester Plus Dead-Front Cable-End Arrester (No. Pole ground conductor.0 Padmount No.9 66. A ground rod has a 60-Hz measured resistance and a surge impedance (ZSURGE). ZSURGE is always less than.43. ground conductors. b.

** Measurement must be made before connecting the ground under test to the system ground. Ground rods are the primary means to reduce ground resistance on JCN cable installations. Random lay: eight rods per mile. a. Overhead multigrounded system neutral. 9.2 summarizes ground rod rules and requirements. Counterpoise. to lower ground resistance. If possible. followed by the transformer ground rod. The counterpoise should be attached at the cable termination for best results. 17. Continuous counterpoise connected to the JCN at the pole top and extended to the transformer ground rod will reduce jacket voltage up to 50 percent. Counterpoise and ground rods should be installed below the frost line. not multiple rods. 19. Ideally. TABLE 5. 16. The surge currents produce undesirable effects that. Counterpoise will reduce jacket voltages. Continuous counterpoise should be installed to the first transformer. if practical. 18. Table 5. If the ground resistance value is high. counterpoise and ground rods should be placed in an area with permanent moisture content. Length. b. The three factors that affect ground resistance are the following: a. are reduced by a low ground rod resistance when compared with the surge impedances of the various paths.20: Ground Resistance Testers. 12. d. Ground resistance calculations should be used to compare different ground system configurations. Power cable only: four rods per mile. Take special measures to adequately ground JCN cable installations when compared with semiconducting jacketed and BCN cable systems. space them at least two rod lengths apart. c. Jacketed cable neutral. Therefore. use longer rods. 20. and e.Grounding and Surge Prot e c t i o n – 2 3 7 5 c. When multiple rods are used because of rocky soil. An ideal ground has a low ground resistance value. Doing so helps prevent an increase in ground resistance caused by frozen soil. and c. Type of Grounding System Single Ground Rod Multiple Ground Rod Counterpoise 10. the ground resistance of the counterpoise or ground rod increases. Clamp-On* 3-Point** Meter Meter X X X X X 4-Point** Meter X X 11. it should be decreased by: . the soil resistivity should be measured using a four-point earth resistance tester. Number of rods. Where possible. 8. Counterpoise is considered a made electrode. b. the riser pole ground resistance should have the lowest value. If full-length counterpoise is not justified. 100. except for arrester lead length. Low ground rod resistance will reduce jacket voltage and the amount of surge current flowing on the JCN to the transformer and service neutrals. * Measurement must be made with the ground under test connected to a multigrounded system. 13. To measure the ground resistance. 14. 22.20 should be used. an engineer will need the soil resistivity value before designing a grounding 300-foot lengths should be used. Spacing. If this information is not available. one of the testers listed in Table 5. Soil resistivity directly affects ground resistance. 23. 21. and then the service ground. The required number of driven rods for a JCN cable installation is set by the NESC. When the surrounding soil dries out. 15.

midpoint cable tap. which cancels the incoming wave. 37. 26. Light-duty dead-front arresters should be coordinated with riser pole arresters so their discharge capability is not exceeded because of current sharing. voltage. After the decision is made where to place the arresters. MOV arresters should be used for riser pole applications because they provide better protective margins than do similar SiC designs. the reflected voltage is negative. Series and shunt-gapped MOV riser pole arresters have better temporary overvoltage capability and slightly better protective characteristics than gapless models. 34. and d. which is the value to use with 8 × 20 µs arrester data. it gives 1.2 3 8 – Se c t io n 5 5 a. Standards recommend using an average rise time (di/dt) of 4 kA/µs when calculating lead . First upstream transformer from the open point. 30. Open-point transformer between two sections of a loop-feed circuit.4 µH/ft. and equipment BIL. bushing. lightning surge current magnitude. choose the next higher MOV arrester rating (10 kV and 21 kV rather than the usual 9 kV and 18 kV). For riser pole installations. Tap point. Necessary and optional arrester locations that will minimize cable and transformer overvoltages should be used. 38. c. Arrester lead lengths must be kept as short as physically possible to obtain the maximum protective margin. MOV arrester voltage ratings of 10 kV and 21 kV may be used instead of 9-kV and 18-kV units. Dead-front lightning arresters should be applied close to protected equipment on underground systems to increase protective margins. Open end of a lateral tap. If this line is terminated in a short circuit. 25. When unsure about overvoltage duration. Selection of MOV arrester voltage rating is based on the MCOV the arrester sees during normal service. and then to the conductor and ground terminals of the cable termination. For a line terminated by an MOV arrester. or MOV arrester. They should be considered in areas where inadequate voltage regulation occurs. 31. 27. 24. Protective margin depends on protective characteristics of the arrester. if problems are encountered with overvoltages. 29. but the reflected voltage is increased by one-half the arrester valve-on voltage. 28. Increasing the number of ground rods.17: BIL –1 × 100 IR + LV 33. It is important to remember how an incident traveling voltage wave reacts when it meets a change in surge impedance at a junction point such as an open point. and parking stand dead-front arresters should be physically connected at the following: a. Maximum voltage rise on the unfaulted phases of a loaded three-phase circuit and voltage regulation on distribution feeders above five percent can cause long-term overvoltages on MOV arresters. voltage doubling does not occur. 36. PM(%) = 32. Short riser pole leads and duplicate voltage ratings help ensure proper current sharing. When this value is multiplied by 0. or b. Protective margin is calculated using Equation 5. this is accomplished by making connections to the arrester terminals first. elbow. 35. b. the reflected voltage is positive and produces a voltage doubling effect.6 kV/ft lead voltage. If the junction point is an open circuit (infinite surge impedance). Recent studies have shown this value should be somewhere between four to eight kilovolts per foot when using arrester FOW characteristics to calculate protective margin. Increasing the length of the ground rod or counterpoise.

Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 3 9 6 In This Section: Ferroresonance Allowable Overvoltages During Ferroresonance Distribution Transformer Connections Qualitative Description of Ferroresonance Ferroresonance When Switching at the Primary Terminals of Overhead and Underground Transformer Banks Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Delta or Ungrounded-Wye Connected Primary Windings Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Winding and Five-Legged Core Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings and Triplex Construction Ferroresonance in Underground Feeders Having More Than One Transformer Summary of Techniques for Preventing Ferroresonance in Underground Systems Summary and Recommendations References were used instead of bare overhead conductors Before the use of primary voltages above 15 kV for primary circuits—operating at any voltage in overhead systems. However. and before the use of level—ferroresonance occurred during the medium-voltage power cables for primary distriswitching of the cable circuit and the distribubution circuits. when shielded cables . Single phasing in which establishes configuraferroresonance occurred durthree-phase primary tions where the capacitances ing the switching of small circuits can cause of the primary circuit and the transformer banks at their prinonlinear inductances of the mary terminals. transformers are arranged so ingly. when 24.9-kV sults from single phasing in and 34. engineers designing and operattion transformers connected to them. ing distribution systems were not concerned Ferroresonance in underground systems rewith ferroresonance.5-kV phase voltage levthree-phase primary circuits els were introduced for overwith distribution transformers. Correspondferroresonance. head distribution systems.

and whether single-phase. whether overhead or underground. and singuidelines. and equipment connected equipment and cause failures. codes in some states require that the neutral conductor be grounded more frequently than four times per mile. gle-pole sectionalizers when rated into this section. computtion of rural distribution systems need to be faers. System designs and transformer connechigh ferroresonant overvoltages from occurring tions that are prone to ferroresonance should be during single-phase conditions in the primary avoided wherever possible. This investem in which ferroresonance is prevented for tigation. Each primary feeder in these systems. veephase. ceptibility of a transformer. operating personnel must be able to rectors of conditions in which ferroresonance may ognize when ferroresonance may occur during occur. It identisusceptible to ferroresonance than those in use fies the distribution transformer connections that when previous ferroresonance guidelines were are highly susceptible to ferroresonance during developed. to the secondary side of the distribution transThose responsible for the design and operaformer. certain switchconsortium. When ground faults occur on the primary feeder of these systems. of which NRECA is a member. A major investigation of ferroresosingle-phase switching. and electronic home entertainment equipmiliar with ferroresonance to prevent extremely ment. Single phasing also occurs if a sysduring ferroresonance can cause failure of both tem component fails in a way that produces an metal oxide and gapped silicon carbide surge aropen conductor condition. including the new more susceptible to single-pole reclosers. the voltage between any unfaulted phase and the neutral conductor . Allowable Overvoltages During Ferroresonance Most rural primary distribution systems operating at nominal phase voltages up to and including 35 kV (line-to-ground voltages up to 20 kV) are multigrounded neutral systems. and Research (DSTAR) by operating personnel. However. splices. elbow connectors. elbow cause very high overvoltages that damage connectors. has ing procedures and sequences will minimize the obtained results showing that some previous chance of ferroresonance during normal switchguidelines about ferroresonance are not valid for ing operations. research. or three-phase. As noted in Section 5. has a neutral conductor that is grounded at least four times per mile. The findings of this connects. distribution transformers. Most guidelines predate the present widesingle-pole switching of cable circuits with conspread evaluation of losses by utilities in the nected transformer(s) and know how to sectiontransformer procurement process. have been incorpoferroresonance. Under some circumnance in modern grounded-wye pad-mounted stances. If the system design three-phase systems. Single-phase conditions and has generated updated Modern low-loss occur during the normal operferroresonance avoidance transformers are much ation of fused or nonfused disguidelines. and the substantial This section provides the system designer decrease in transformer losses in recent years with information needed to design a system makes the transformers of today much more in which ferroresonance is less likely.2 4 0 – Se c t io n 6 6 that nonlinear resonance can newer low-loss transformers. it may not be possible to design a systransformers was completed in 1992. Ferroresonance may resters. sponsored by the Distribution Systems any switching procedure or sequence selected Testing. Application. No-load losses alize and switch the system so that ferroresohave a direct effect on the ferroresonance susnance will not occur. including consumer appliances. cables. or topology does not eliminate the chance of Experience and previous guidelines for avoidferroresonance under all possible switching coning ferroresonance are not always good indicaditions. occur. circuits and their connected Field experience has shown transformers are energized and that overvoltages occurring de-energized.

or primary feeders with concentric neutral cables. . and the sinformer connections found in rural distribution gle-phase. windings (delta.25 times the system nominal line-to-neutral voltage. Distribution Transformer Connections The transformer connections shown in FigFerroresonance in distribution systems occurs ures 6. systems. rising as high as 1.47/7.25 pu.25-pu voltage present during ground faults is the basis for selecting the duty cycle voltage rating of the surge arresters applied on most rural distribution systems. is connected across the secondary winding with The delta/grounded-wye connections and the the center tap and secondary grounded-wye/grounded-wye neutral conductor. (e). and (f) are used to supply during the single phasing of circuits. whereas other winding connections necting single-phase transformers into threeprevent ferroresonance under all practical phase banks. the three-phase. the voltages from the unfaulted phases to the neutral conductor in a typical rural system will not exceed 1. For overhead construction with conductors on an eight-foot or longer crossarm. Arrester duty cycle ratings are at least 1.46 pu). and their connected a nominal voltage of 240/120 volts. which is not common on most rural systems. For example.25 per unit or pu). The application tables and equations in this section for determining the allowable cable lengths during the switching of cable circuits and connected transformers are based on limiting temporary overvoltages to 1.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 4 1 6 will rise above the nominal line-to-neutral voltage for the system. usually four-wire delta secondary systems. connections in Figures 6. on a 12. voltages of either 208Y/120 and ungrounded-wye) are volts or 480Y/277 volts.25 times nominal. These ferroresonance is highly susceptible to ferrowinding connections are used very likely during resonance during single-phase in three-phase transformers switching in underground sysand in banking three singlesingle phasing. Whether ferroresodelta/open-delta connections and the open-wye/ nance is possible—as well as the maximum open-delta connections usually are made from allowed length of a circuit with a connected two single-phase distribution transformers. (d). In the four-wire delta secondary conditions. The delta/delta and the ungroundedtransformer primary windings.25 pu.25 times the nominal line-to-neutral voltage (1. altransformer that can be switched with singlethough some “three-phase” transformers have pole switches without exceeding 1.46 times nominal value (1. open-delta. operating at underground cable circuits. operating at nominal winding connections. and are used in connance. three-wire load is supFigure 6.1(c). If the primary feeders employ spacer cable or armless construction. transformers four-wire wye secondary systion transformer with ungrounded primary tems. three-wire 120/240-volt lighting load systems. Certain winding wye/delta connections are found in some connections are highly susceptible to ferroresothree-phase transformers.25-per-unit overvoltage is also the upper limit on the temporary overvoltages that can be permitted during single-phase switching in rural distribution systems. the duty cycle voltage rating of the surge arrester is either nine or 10 kV. The 1. The opendistribution transformers. This 1. the voltage from an unfaulted phase to the neutral conductor can exceed 1.25-pu voltage been made with the open-wye/open-delta con—depend on the connections of the distribution nections.1 shows the more common transplied phase-to-phase at 240 volts. three-phase phase transformers.1(a) As discussed in detail later and (b) are used to supply With certain distribuin this section. The wide acceptance of this application guide for surge arrester voltage rating acknowledges that the equipment connected from phase to neutral on rural distribution systems is subjected to and can tolerate temporary line-toneutral overvoltages of 1. In contrast. tems.2-kV rural system.

leaving just the . having a frequency of ω radians per second. an initial transient response may eventually settle into a sustained steady-state response. depending on construction of the three-phase transformer or transformer bank. in which the resistor. Qualitative Description of Ferroresonance DEFINITION Ferroresonance is a complex electrical phenomenon in electrical circuits having at least one nonlinear inductor and at least one linear capacitor that is fed by one or more voltage sources having a sinusoidal waveshape. With this background. In general. it is then possible to consider the effects of this phenomenon on the distribution system. current. Ferroresonance can be a chaotic phenomenon. The steady-state mode may depend on the initial or transient conditions in the circuit. look at the effect of a nonlinear inductor in the circuit. the radian frequency is 377 radians per second. review the response of the series resistive-inductive-capacitive (RLC) circuit with linear parameters. RESONANCE IN THE LINEAR INDUCTIVE-CAPACITIVE CIRCUIT Figure 6. The transient response decays with time to zero.2 shows a series RLC circuit. The nonlinear inductor is a saturable circuit element such as an iron core transformer.1: Transformer Connections for Four-Wire Wye and Four-Wire Delta Services.2 4 2 – Se c t io n 6 6 P S Neutral P S Neutral Neutral (a) Delta/Grounded-Wye (b) Grounded-Wye/Grounded-Wye (c) Delta/Delta P S P S Neutral P S Neutral P S Neutral (d) Ungrounded-Wye/Delta P = Primary S = Secondary (e) Open-Delta/Open-Delta (f) Open-Wye/Open-Delta FIGURE 6. the current in the circuit and the voltage across each element consist of a steady-state response and almost always a transient response. The circuit is energized by closing switch S1 at time zero. There can be more than one steady-state response mode in a specific circuit. the steady-state voltage and current waveforms are not sinusoidal like those of the source voltage. First. or any other parameter. The circuit may never settle into a steady-state condition and may erratically jump from one mode to another indefinitely. When ferroresonance occurs from a switching operation to energize or de-energize a circuit. Following switch closure. inductance. Linear means that the resistance. transformers or transformer banks with the grounded primary windings (grounded-wye or open-wye) are less susceptible to ferroresonance and may even prevent ferroresonance from occurring. and second. and capacitance of the elements do not change with time. In the 60-Hz system. inductor. and capacitor are linear. The source is a sine wave voltage with a peak magnitude of VM. meaning that a switching event repeated identically on the same circuit yields results that are substantially different.

XC. During resonance. in radians per second XC = Capacitive reactance FIGURE 6. in Henries C = Capacitance of the capacitor. in Henries C = Capacitance of the capacitor. of course. in radians per second .2: Series RLC Circuit with Sinusoidal Excitation. in Farads ω = Frequency of the system.1: RLC Current Response. is given by Equation 6. in ohms Vrms = rms value of the source voltage rms value of the current rms value of the source voltage Resistance of the resistor. the denominator of the equation has a minimum value equal to R. If the inductance L and capacitance C are constant. Equation 6. the input impedance to the circuit of Figure 6. ωL is the inductive reactance. in ohms Inductance of the inductor. L C VL = Vrms R where: VL = Voltage across the inductor and capacitor at resonance L = Inductance of the inductor. in radians per second L = Inductance of the inductor. in Farads R = Resistance of the resistor. The magnitudes of the voltage across the inductor and capacitor at Equation 6. When there is no trapped voltage on the capacitor and no current in the inductor. in Farads Equation 6. the circuit resistance. In Equation 6. in Henries C = Capacitance of the capacitor. ω0 = 1 radians/second LC where: ω0 = Resonant frequency. and 1/ωC is the capacitive reactance. Just two closing angles do not produce a transient response (occurring. With linear parameters in the circuit.1. and the current in the circuit has a maximum value equal to Vrms/R amperes. designated as ω0 in radians per second.2 is purely resistive and the circuit is in resonance. When the inductive reactance ωL is equal to the capacitive reactance. The steady-state response continues as long as the circuit is connected to the source. only one steady-state response is possible. the current and the voltages vary sinusoidally with time at the same frequency as the source voltage. such as capacitor voltage and inductor current. XL. after the transient response subsides. the voltage across the resistor is at its maximum possible value and equal to the source voltage. the point on the source voltage wave at which switch S1 is closed (closing angle θ) determines if there is a transient response and the initial magnitude of that response. with both reactances having units of ohms. the frequency at which resonance occurs is called the resonant frequency. Also. The resonant frequency. In steady-state conditions.3: Resonant Voltage.2: Resonant Frequency. 1/ωC. at the zero crossings). Vrms. and it is independent of the closing angle and initial conditions at switch closure. steady-state response.2. Irms = where: Irms = Vrms = R = L = Vrms R2 + (ωL – 1/ωC)2 Equation 6. at this point.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 4 3 6 S1 R XL = ωL VMsin(wt+θ) XC = 1/ωC XL = Inductive reactance ω = Frequency of the system.1 gives the rms value of the current in the circuit.

including whether resonance does or does not occur.3. . leaving just the steady-state response. see Equation 6. Graphical techniques also show that two steady-state solutions are possible for many ferroresonant circuits. transient network analyzer (TNA) studies. thus. possible (Germany. the peak values of the inductor and capacitor voltages can be higher than the peak value of the source voltage. Ferroresonant voltage waveshapes can be classified into three types of repetitive patterns or modes. Graphical techniques give an approximate solution for the fundamental frequency component of the response of the ferroresonant circuit. the voltage across the inductor has its maximum at a frequency that is somewhat above the resonant frequency. In subharmonic ferroresonance. with the response determined by the closing angle and the initial conditions. high capacitor voltages. Generally. the response quantities include a large component whose frequency is higher than that of the supply voltage. For example. the current and voltage waveforms in the circuit are periodic but not sinusoidal like the source voltage. However. there is both a transient response and a steady-state response. 2. The resulting response in circuits with iron core inductors is called ferroresonance. but the resistance prevents this. Simple equations can be written and solved for both the transient and steady-state responses of the linear RLC circuit when energized from a sinusoidal voltage source. because of the presence of an iron core. and Borst. Mastero. but the time for this to happen with the nonlinear circuit frequently is much greater than in a linear circuit. With fundamental ferroresonance. 1975). In subharmonic ferroresonance. Most studies of ferroresonance in power systems have been performed with either full-scale testing. just as in a linear circuit that is in resonance. the initial conditions and closing angle do affect the probability of resonance occurring. the equations describing the circuit do not have a simple solution. the currents and voltages contain a large component whose frequency is less than the frequency of the supply system. If there were no resistance in the circuit. the probability of the two possible steady-state responses is not the same or easily definable.3 it can be seen that the voltage across the inductor and capacitor at resonance in a series RLC circuit can be greater than the source voltage. 1974): 1. or digital transient programs. The two steady-state responses in the singlephase ferroresonant circuit are called the normal mode and the ferroresonant mode (Feldman and Hopkin.1 for the steady-state current. Fundamental.2 is nonlinear and the circuit is energized by closing switch S1.2. and Vroman. and 3. From Equation 6. Three steady-state ferroresonant modes are. and relatively high currents. two steady-state responses are possible in a simple single-phase circuit with one nonlinearity. Higher harmonic. giving some insight into the phenomenon (Rudenberg. Swanson. when the inductance is nonlinear. 1974). However. the value given by Equation 6. But if the inductor is nonlinear. groundedwye/grounded-wye transformers used on the systems of RUS borrowers (Smith. when there is resistance in the circuit. The ferroresonant mode is characterized by substantial saturation of the nonlinear inductor. the initial conditions and the closing angle have no effect on the steady-state response. In addition. All three of these responses have been observed during ferroresonance in cable-fed five-legged core. Also. Chapter 48). but the component at the system frequency is the greatest. In the linear circuit of Figure 6. FERRORESONANCE IN THE NONLINEAR INDUCTIVE CAPACITIVE CIRCUIT When the inductor in the series RLC circuit of Figure 6.2 4 4 – Se c t io n 6 6 resonance are equal to each other. Subharmonic. the current and voltage waveforms repeat at intervals of two or more fundamental-frequency cycles. 1970. When the steady-state ferroresonant mode occurs. and the capacitor voltage has its maximum at a frequency that is slightly below the resonant frequency. the currents and voltages are badly distorted. the capacitor and inductor voltages would be infinite at the resonant frequency. And with higher harmonic ferroresonance. The transient response decays to zero.

The capacitance is from the primary cable on the open phase(s). are energized or de-energized with single-pole switches. or Surge Arresters Fused Switches φA Shielded Cable Circuit Pad-Mounted Transformer H1 H2 MGN Feeder (Overhead or Underground) φC φB H3 X3 X1 No Load X2 Cable Capacitance Neutral Conductor Cable Shield and Concentric Neutral Riser Pole or Switching Enclosure FIGURE 6. and load is not connected to the secondary during switching.3: Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformer Susceptible to Ferroresonance. and voltage than occur in the ferroresonant mode. These overvoltages can persist as long as one or two primary phases remain open. In Figure 6. a steady-state response never develops. When ferroresonance occurs. whatever the situation may be. ferroresonance is not possible. When both the ferroresonant mode and normal mode responses are possible in circuits as in Figure 6. The final ferroresonant mode that has been observed in some nonlinear circuits is one in which the responses are nonperiodic. One three-phase transformer is fed through a cable circuit from an overhead line.2 and there is no trapped charge on the capacitor or flux in the nonlinear inductor. and just one or two switches are closed. After all three phases are closed or opened to eliminate the single-phase condition. The sound emitted by the transformer frequently is described as rattling. The transformer primary windings are connected in delta. In addition. as in Figure 6. or from a pad-mounted switching enclosure on an underground feeder. where the inductance is nonlinear. This condition is present when one or two phases of the primary line are open and there are unloaded transformers downstream from the open conductor. The fuses providing fault protection to the transformer and cable circuit are located at the cable riser pole or switching enclosure. similar to that in Figure 6. and the nonlinear inductance is due to the transformer exciting impedance(s).3 shows a typical situation in which ferroresonance can occur.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 4 5 6 Relatively. The capacitance can be either upstream or downstream of the transformer as long as both are downstream from the open-phase point. That is. is established. SWITCHING OPERATIONS PRODUCING FERRORESONANCE IN THREE-PHASE DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS Figure 6. current. If the values of L and C are in a specific range. a series LC circuit. A range of closing angles give the ferroresonant mode response and a range of closing angles give the normal mode response. whining.3. Ferroresonance in distribution circuits can occur if a capacitor is placed in series with a nonlinear inductor. A permanent connection is made between the transformer primary terminals and the cable circuit. only the phase A switch is closed. so overvoltages can appear on phases B and C. This mode can occur in distribution systems during ferroresonance. the responses in the normal mode are more or less sinusoidal. with sinusoidal voltages applied.2. the transformer may be very noisy because of magnetostriction in the core. ferroresonance can occur. When the unloaded three-phase transformer and cable circuit. the normal mode is characterized by lower values of flux. producing overvoltages from both phase-to-phase and phase-to-ground on the open phases. . the point on the voltage wave at switch closing determines the response mode.3.

1992) with grounded loud humming. high curThe overvoltages produced by ferroresonance rent blows the fuse in the faulted phase.3). the cable circuit length. If a the secondary because doing so makes a singlecable insulation failure occurred on open phases phase condition that may cause harmful overB or C in Figure 6. or surge arresters on the open phases. The operator at the switch location might not be aware of the insuEQUIPMENT AFFECTED BY lation failure. However. However. 1978). If sufficient resistive open phases persist until all three phases are eiload (reasonably balanced) is connected to the ther connected to. and Fergestad. 1968). the initial voltages as high as nine times normal peak voltcharge on the cable capacitance at the time of age during ferroresonance (Young. But. the maximum overvoltIf the overvoltages do not age magnitudes varied within cause an insulation failure or a range. occur across the transformer not a high-current when sufficient capacitance is windings during ferroresopresent to create ferroresonance. Tests with T-T wave at which the switch is operated. Swanson. Schmid. 1968).3. transformer insulaintentionally switch a cable circuit and connected tion. or disconnected from. the fault current would not blow the fuse in phase A. but nance.5-kV undernant mode rather than the normal mode. or the voltages are phenomenon. ferroresonant overvoltages will not source. Consequently. there is a finite gized by switching from a riser pole (as in Figprobability that ferroresonant overvoltages will ure 6. When ages some of the time and. switch was closed. the residcable-fed transformers produced transient peak ual flux in the core of the transformer. and switching. the overvoltages on the transformer in Figure 6. the transformer with consumer load connected to currents may operate overcurrent devices. Schmid. the overvoltage was less than rated.3 when just the phase A fused voltages if insufficient load is connected. the literature mentioned the ungrounded as in Figure 6. short circuit. the transformer. and Fergestad (1968) Overvoltages have caused corona in separable are the probabilities of obtaining the ferroresoinsulated connectors used in 34. When the transformer primary windings are As early as 1954. when the fused switch in the FERRORESONANT OVERVOLTAGES faulted phase is subsequently closed. From case to unusual noises. However. most system operators will not failure of cable insulation. the size of Fergestad. wye-wye transformers on fivewhen low-level overvoltages Ferroresonance is legged cores have shown that. case. 1975) and more recent investigations system are either gapped SiC arresters. overcable-fed transformers are energized or de-enervoltages will not occur. a defined switching rural systems from higher than normal 60-Hz operation may produce ferroresonant overvoltovervoltages (Crann and Flickinger. and the cable cirfailure of reclosers and surge arresters in 24. gapless .2 4 6 – Se c t io n 6 6 (Walling. That is. the secondary. the currents usuThe preceding discussion assumed that load ally will not activate overcurrent protective dewas not connected to the secondary side of the vices. the transhigh overvoltages present in virtually every formers may not emit any may be present. Earlier investigations (Smith. 1954).3. at other times. ground systems (Locke. and the switching sequence. can cause insulation in major equipment to fail. especially in the early days of underde-energize the circuit and transformer (Young. ground distribution when some pad-mounted Schmid. Other components damaged by ferroresonant The ferroresonant overvoltage probabilities reovervoltages are cables and elbow connectors. if the overvoltages cause the occur.9-kV cuit is a specified length. ported by Young. switching event. transformer insulation failures are occur when the single-pole switches energize or numerous. Factors affecting three-phase distribution transformers employed the probability are the point on the voltage the T-T winding connections. and Surge arresters applied on the distribution Borst.

consisting of three phase conductors and a multigrounded neutral conductor. Capacitances of Overhead Lines An overhead line. or gapped MOV units. usually without drawing a large amount of current. depending on the heat transfer characteristics of a given MOV arrester design.5: Equivalent Capacitance Network for an Overhead Multigrounded Neutral Line.4. than the phase-to-ground capacitance of an underground distribution cable of equal length. In general. ferroresonance is more likely in underground systems than in overhead systems. FIGURE 6. IMPACT OF CIRCUIT CONSTRUCTION One of the parameters that determines if ferroresonance occurs with single-pole switching of a circuit with an unloaded transformer is the circuit capacitance. the arrester may eventually overheat. The standard TOV curves are developed using stiff 60-Hz sources. but the ferroresonant circuit is weak compared to the load imposed by the MOV arrester in its conductive state. This means that the arrester can hold down the voltage. The neutral conductor does . CAG CBG CCG Ground FIGURE 6. 1992). However. The effect of ferroresonant overvoltages on gapless MOV arresters is much less than would be presumed by examining the standard temporary overvoltage (TOV) curves (Walling et al. There is an equivalent capacitance between each pair of phase conductors and from each phase conductor to ground. as shown in Figure 6. φB CAB φA CAC CBC φC Circuit and transformer capacitances are important in ferroresonance equations. by at least a factor of ten. is represented by six equivalent capacitors as shown in Figure 6.4: Conductor Spacings for an Overhead Line on an Eight-Foot Crossarm. Because of the higher capacitance. a gapped arrester of a given duty cycle voltage rating can withstand a higher ferroresonant overvoltage than a gapless arrester can. provided the peak voltage does not exceed the gap sparkover voltage. The equivalent capacitances of overhead lines are much less.5..Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 4 7 6 B 4 7” 47” 88” C A 49” 58 ” ” 52 N Conductor Heights Above Ground A = 300” B = 317” C = 300” N = 267” C of Pole L MOV units.

the phase-to-phase equivalent capacitances are about 0. Although the calculation of the equivalent capacitances for the overhead line is rather involved. all capacitance is from phase to ground. in inches K = Dielectric constant of the insulation (For HMWPE and XLPE insulation. and the phaseto-ground capacitances are about 0.0033 CBC = 0. the capacitance for cables with HMWPE and XLPE insulation.3. and 345 mils in sizes up through 1. Capacitances of Cable Circuits With single-conductor shielded cable. the conductor separation in an overhead line is several feet or more. rule-of-thumb values.6: Cross Section of a Multiwire Concentric Neutral Cable. 220. For cables with EPR insulation with the same nominal diameter over the insulation and the same insulation thickness.1. in inches d = Diameter over the conductor shield. the calculation of the shielded cable capacitance is straightforward.0081 CCG = 0. K is about 2. the logarithm is to the base 10.2 4 8 – Se c t io n 6 6 not appear in this representation because.4.0092 Phase-to-Phase Capacitances (microfarads/mile) CAB = 0. The separation between the two “plates” making the capacitor—the conductor shield and the insulation shield—is the thickness of the insulation. diameter over the insulation.0032 CAC = 0. it is at the same potential as the ground.0016 Insulation (220 Mils) For symmetrical three-phase distribution lines.5 list the capacitance of cables with nominal insulation thicknesses of 175. 6. with the capacitance from A to C being the smallest as these two phase conductors are the farthest apart. The three phase-to-ground capacitances are not equal because of the unsymmetrical conductor configuration. capacitively. 1965). For a line with 4/0 ACSR phase conductors and a 1/0 ACSR neutral conductor. The capacitance is found with Equation 6. In contrast. with the conductor heights and spacings in Figure 6.3.) . For EPR insulation. Equation 6.010 microfarads per mile (Hopkinson.002 microfarads per mile. values for the equivalent capacitances are given in Table 6. Also.3 times those in the tables. In Equation 6. which is less than one-half inch.4.2. Figure 6.0. Insulation Shield D d Phase Conductor Conductor Shield Neutral Wire FIGURE 6. so the cable capacitance is much larger than any of the equivalent capacitances of an overhead line. and the cable charging in kVA per mile for a three-phase circuit operating at the indicated phase-to-phase voltage.0090 CBG = 0. Phase-to-Ground Capacitances (microfarads/mile) CAG = 0. in microfarads/mile D = Diameter over the insulation. there is no phaseto-phase capacitance. the capacitances are approximately 1. shows a cross section of a concentric neutral cable. These are easy-to-remember. C= 0. TABLE 6. Each table gives the conductor size.1: Values for Equivalent Capacitances of an Overhead Line With 4/0 ACSR Phase Conductors and a 1/0 ACSR Neutral Conductor.03886 K µFarads/mile log D/d where: C = Capacitance.000 kcmil.4: Shielded Cable Capacitance. and 6. 260. K is about 3. Tables 6. the phase-to-phase capacitances are not the same.

110 1.3.248 0.725 0.543 0.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 4 9 6 TABLE 6.375 1.155 1.263 0.282 0.230 0.427 0.855 0. 175 mil insulation no longer allowed by RUS TABLE 6.405 0.9 33.47 kV (kVAC/mile) 15.965 1.517 0.3 19.065 1.3: Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging or XLPE Insulated Cables With 220 Mils Insulation.7 30.1 * Dielectric constant of 2.020 1.8 * Dielectric constant of 2.105 1.594 0.D.701 0.D.489 0.457 0.3 31. For EPR cables with same nominal O.291 0.465 1.940 1.451 0. of Insulation (inches) 0..745 0.336 0.8 25.5 15.000 Nominal O..195 1.641 0.4 16.1 46. Note.360 1.2 23. multiply capacitance and charging values in table by 1.8 28.0 26.6 41.490 0.* Conductor Size (AWG or kcmil) 2 1 1/0 2/0 3/0 4/0 250 300 350 400 500 600 750 1. .357 0.391 0.645 @ Three-Phase Charging 12.786 @ Three-Phase Charging 12.8 37.1 21.D.0 22.7 22.690 0.312 0.000 Nominal O.326 0.576 0.4 28.9 25.9 34.D.2: Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables With 175 Mils Insulation. For EPR cables with same nominal O.3.765 0.* Conductor Size (AWG or kcmil) 2 1 1/0 2/0 3/0 4/0 250 300 350 400 500 600 750 1.6 30.810 0.429 0.780 0.520 Capacitance (µFarads/mile) 0.3.3. multiply capacitance and charging values in table by 1.2 26.050 1.8 37.915 0. of Insulation (inches) 0.5 14.269 0.850 0.8 17.275 1.0 18.655 0.610 Capacitance (µFarads/mile) 0.280 1.379 0.005 1.527 0.200 1.6 19.47 kV (kVAC/mile) 13.

2 64.5 179.D.870 Capacitance (µFarads/mile) 0. is the diameter over the insulation.2 144.1 123.1 108.461 0.6 49.261 1.295 0.036 1.4 51.1 117. Cable size has a major effect on capacitance and.346 0.212 0.720 1.275 0.7 56.515 0..3 69.322 0.387 0.D.3 166.3.6 37.460 1. multiply capacitance and charging values in table by 1. D.000 Nominal O.310 1.767 Capacitance (µFarads/mile) 0.4 81.4 53.3 40.306 1.540 1.2 5 0 – Se c t io n 6 6 TABLE 6. of Insulation (inches) 0.401 0.578 1. consequently.9 60. d.092 1.345 0.D.0 30.439 0. TABLE 6.0 94.2 75.94 kV (kVAC/mile) 28.275 0.070 1.5 kV (kVAC/mile) 46.318 0. minus twice the insulation thickness.4 61.110 1.292 0.986 1.3.6 * Dielectric constant of 2.1 * Dielectric constant of 2.620 1.4 42.0 138. the likelihood of ferroresonance.389 1. with the values in the second column taken from one manufacturer’s handbook.240 0.241 0.405 0.000 Nominal O.5: Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables With 345 Mils Insulation.1 34.3.443 1.365 1. multiply capacitance and charging values in table by 1. The diameter over the insulation of a given size cable will vary somewhat from manufacturer to manufacturer. For EPR cables with same nominal O.261 0.366 0.256 0.371 0.5 155.447 @ 24. For EPR cables with same nominal O.1 104.5 68.* Conductor Size (AWG or kcmil) 1 1/0 2/0 3/0 4/0 250 300 350 400 500 600 750 1.308 0. of Insulation (inches) 1.94 kV (kVAC/mile) @ Three-Phase Charging Three-Phase Charging 34.* Conductor Size (AWG or kcmil) 1/0 2/0 3/0 4/0 250 300 350 400 500 600 750 1.590 @ Three-Phase Charging 24.5 72. The capacitance values in the tables assume that the diameter over the conductor shield.902 0.D.942 0.210 1.0 32.9 200.4 131.200 1.2 87.4: Representative Capacitance and Three-Phase Charging for XLPE Insulated Cables With 260 Mils Insulation.158 1.. The .199 0.3.415 1.8 89.3 95.9 45.3 47.265 1.

5 (Walling. the relevance of each depends on the primary winding connection. This capacitance adds to that provided by underground cables.9-kV systems. the capacitance between both (a) the outer layer of the primary and the first layer of the outer secondary . with the capacitance calculated with the assumption that the capacitor may deliver up to 115 percent of nominal kVAR at rated voltage. The transformer capacitance.25 For transformers with ungrounded primary connections (e. Equation 6. Even the smallest capacitor banks on a three-phase circuit look like at least a mile of shielded cable. floating wye. capacitance values in the tables are used in application criteria for calculating the maximum cable length that can be switched without exceeding 1. floating wye.41 * Capacitance values based on 115 percent of nominal kVA rating. overhead lines.4 kV.5 kV. delta.94 5.47. It is also true of grounded-wye/groundedwye pad-mounted transformers using five-legged cores at 24. Minor contributions are made by the capacitance between the outer primary winding layer to the core and tank. the average trend versus rated line-to-line primary winding voltage (in kV) and rated kVA has been reduced to the empirical calculation in Equation 6. or capacitor bank.83 11.and 24.. the net capacitance between primary winding layers is the major contributor to phase-ground capacitance in transformers with the primary winding wound outside of the secondary (SP construction).000469 × (kVA)0. This is particularly true of banks with ungrounded primaries (e.25-pu ferroresonant overvoltages.77 17.* Nominal Three-Phase Rating (kVA) 150 300 450 600 900 Capacitance in Microfarads 12. a maximum capacitance to ground can be left connected to an open phase during single-phase switching without risking excessive ferroresonant overvoltage. the transformer capacitance alone is sufficient to create ferroresonance. The layerto-layer capacitance does not contribute to the phase-to-ground capacitance. For a given transformer. the capacitance between the outer layer of the primary winding and the first layer of the outer half of the secondary winding is also a major contributor. Capacitance of Capacitor Banks Capacitor banks on a three-phase primary circuit being switched with a transformer may cause ferroresonance because the capacitor acts like a long cable circuit.9 kV System 2.2 or 14. While there are many inherent capacitances internal to a transformer. The equivalent phase-to-ground winding capacitances of a number of groundedwye pad-mounted transformers have been calculated. delta. overhead line. 1992). In some cases.5 CXFMR = 0. In transformers with the secondary wound on both the inside and the outside of the primary (SPS construction). Table 6.6: Phase-to-Ground Capacitance of Three-Phase GroundedWye Capacitor Banks.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 5 1 6 TABLE 6.21 2. directly reduces the allowable amount of capacitance that can be provided by the connected cable.47 kV System 24.75 1.53 2. In a transformer with SPS construction. for example. thus. the winding capacitances contributing to ferroresonance are not the same as just described for grounded-wye primaries and the empirical equation does not necessarily apply. The capacitance values are based on capacitors rated either 7.. For a grounded-wye primary.4 (kVA)0. It should be noted that there is no simple means to measure the equivalent phase-to-ground capacitance of a grounded-wye winding and manufacturers’ design data are needed to calculate this parameter.g. or capacitor banks and it contributes to creating a ferroresonant circuit.88 8.9 and 34. or open delta).6 gives the capacitances of three-phase grounded-wye capacitor banks installed in 12.94 4.65 0. Capacitance of Transformer Windings Transformer windings have an inherent capacitance to ground. or opendelta).g.

may or may overhead distribution systems when the switchnot be grounded by connection to the multiing is done at the primary terminals of the transgrounded neutral conductor of the primary system. Ferroresonance When Switching at the Primary Terminals of Overhead and Underground Transformer Banks The primary windings of single-phase distribuFerroresonance can occur with certain transtion transformers in banks in the overhead sysformer connections and switching operations in tem.5-kV overnected in either delta or floating-wye. Ferroresonance did the bank. thus.and ing at the primary terminals of the transformer 15-kV class overhead distribution systems when bank. With grounded primary windings.2 5 2 – Se c t io n 6 6 and (b) the innermost primary winding layer and the last layer of the inner secondary add to the phase-to-ground capacitance and. ferroresBefore widespread loss evaluation. and formers when no primary cirload was not connected to the cuits are connected to the secondary system. windings as discussed in the previous subsection. and in the underground system. Thus.8-kV (line-to-line) transgrounded-wye or the open-wye primary windformers. when the primary situations in which the switchwindings of the single-phase should be considered ing is done at the primary tertransformers in the bank were as having the potential minals of transformer banks not grounded in 12. transformer banks nance when switching at the terminals of banks with unUNGROUNDED PRIMARY with ungrounded grounded primary windings. terminals—small transformer banks connected When opening and closing switches at the floating-wye on the primary and delta on the primary terminals of transformer banks (with secondary. whether load the switching was done at the primary terminals is or is not connected to the secondary side of of the bank (Stoelting. either forming the ferroresonant circuit in these cases the grounded-wye or the open-wye connection is the inherent capacitance of the transformer is employed. ferroresonance is possible. with the primaries connected in floatings.9. ferroresonance can occur in underground systems with the same transformer GROUNDED PRIMARY WINDINGS connections when the switching is done at the When the primary windings of the single-phase primary terminals of the bank. it is no longer safe the switching is performed if to consider 15-kV class transthe capacitors are connected transformers or formers immune to ferroresoin delta or ungrounded wye. disconnect vere ferroresonant overvoltsecondary capacitors before All switching of ages. The lessons learned when nance and harmful overvoltages generally did switching transformer banks in overhead systems not occur when single-pole switching was perapply equally well to underground systems. have an effect on the likelihood of ferroresonance. made from single-phase translower voltage systems. whether the secondary is in wye or delta. conoccur during this era in 24. at any primary voltage level. former bank (two or three single-phase transformers). formed at the primary terminals (Ferguson.and 34. Because the winding in transformers with ungrounded primaries does not shunt the phaseto-ground capacitances. Similarly. have shown very seor underground. the total capacitance can be easily measured. But if power factor capacitors. ferroresoonance is impossible during single-pole switchnant overvoltages seldom occurred on five.47-kV and for ferroresonance. WINDINGS primary connections This subsection considers In the past. The capacitance transformers in the bank are grounded. Recent tests performed on a bank of two or three single-phase transformers) with the modern low-loss 13. ferroresoopen terminals. are aphead systems when energizing or de-energizing— plied on the secondary side of the otherwise unwith single-pole switches located at the primary loaded bank. . whether the primary circuits are overhead ing-wye. 1966).

If load loss 25-kVA transformers with is connected to the secondary silicon-steel cores. and the neutral φA switch is also closed before the three fused Neutral Conductor cutouts are opened to de-energize the bank. and floating-wye. The transformers can fail thermally at Primary Terminals.5 pu occurred on the open priovervoltages during the single-pole switching at mary phase when switching banks made from the primary terminals of the smaller floating10. This connection is represented (Crann and Flickinger.7 by the closing of switch SW1 in the one utility with three 15-kVA units in a 34. Ferground overvoltages of five per unit (Shultz. 1991). and the load is voltages in excess of four per reasonably balanced. yielded peak overnals. Tests by should be temporarily connected to the neutral the RUS showed that phase-to-ground overvoltconductor of the primary system to prevent ages as high as 2. This condition may produce loadings where the fuses for the grounded-wye bank do not provide overload FIGURE 6. 1954). if an open phase occurred on the primary feeder between the substation and the location of the grounded-wye/delta transformer bank. ferroresoterminals of small floating-wye/delta banks in 15-. overvoltages also will not unit (Walling. when the switching is perfloating-wye/delta connection formed at the primary termiat 25 kV. Whether the primary system occur.7: Floating-Wye/Delta Transformer Bank with Fused Cutouts protection.and 25-kVA transformers in 24.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 5 3 6 1968). φB After the cutouts are closed to energize the bank. 1964). More recent must always be ungrounded are delta.9-kV systems wye/delta banks. the switch in the neutral is closed before the three fused cutouts Multigrounded Neutral Primary Feeder are closed to energize the bank. roresonance occurs during single-phase condi1964). Connections in normal (Pennsylvania Electric installed for switching which the windings are Company. tending to balance the load Service Surge Arresters Switch on the three primary phases.5-kV connection between the neutral of the bank and floating-wye/delta bank resulted in phase-tothe neutral conductor of the primary system. terminals of small floating-wye/delta transformer The neutral point of the primary windings banks without load on the secondary. Furthermore. If the φC switch remains closed. and it doesn’t matter if the cutouts are being closed to energize the bank or opened to de-energize the bank. before the fused cutouts operate to relieve the . One can no longer transformers in a 34. and 35-kV class systems. nance did occur when switching at the primary 25-. Tests by another utility with three 50-kVA tions. the transformer bank acts Fused Cutouts as a ground source for the primary feeder under φA φB φC normal conditions.9-kV and higher voltages were adoptoccur during single-pole switching at the primary ed for overhead distribution systems.5-kV assume this to always be true system resulted in steady-state Temporary when more modern loss-evalvoltages to ground on the neutral-point grounds uated distribution transformers open phases of about 2. the bank Pole-Top Transformer Bank would supply the load on the open primary SW1 phase beyond the open point. Full-scale tests by in Figure 6. overvoltages can When 24. neutral switch SW1 must be opened. is overhead or underground. Thus. banked in a operation.2 times are used. openfull-scale tests of modern lowremoved for normal delta.

After the switch in phase B is closed. The open-wye/ open-delta transformer bank satisfies these criteria for service to three. If a floating-wye/delta bank is to be switched at its primary terminals with load connected to the secondary. followed 12 cycles later by closing the switch in phase B to energize terminal H2. However. regardless of primary voltage. Figure 6. overvoltages will not occur from phase to neutral on the bank side of the open cutouts on the primary side regardless of primary system voltage. As shown in Figure 6. the transient voltage from terminal H3 to ground approaches four per unit. Of even more importance is the fact that the backfeed condition from the groundedwye bank will be hazardous to personnel working on the lines. In the 1950s and ’60s. if the load connected to the secondary is badly unbalanced or connected across just one phase. the ungrounded-wye or delta connections frequently were employed for primary windings in distribution transformer banks and in three-phase transformers. Such occurrences have caused the failure of gapped SiC and MOV surge arresters connected to the terminals of the bank. An alternative to temporarily grounding the neutral of the floating-wye/delta bank. During this 12cycle interval. For the system configuration of Figure 6. if load is connected to the secondary of the floating-wye/delta bank during switching and the load is reasonably balanced.and four-wire delta secondaries. This arrangement is shown in Figure 6.7. many of them also had the delta or ungrounded-wye primary windings that had been applied successfully in overhead systems. is to select transformer connections that can be grounded yet do not act as a ground source for the primary system. it may create higher voltage unbalance in the secondary system than the floating-wye/delta bank. transformers with ungrounded primary windings sometimes failed. Temporarily grounding the neutral of the floating-wye/delta bank prevents ferroresonance during planned single-pole switching. the secondary phase-to-phase voltage across the missing leg will be two times normal. Early UD systems often consisted of a threephase transformer fed through a cable circuit from an overhead line. Terminal H1 is energized first by closing the switch in phase A.9 shows the measured voltage waveforms and current into terminal H2 of the transformer when the cable and transformer are energized with single-pole switches. These connections had been used successfully in lower voltage primary systems. From the waveforms. These waveforms are from tests on a 150-kVA delta/ grounded-wye transformer bank fed through a cable circuit with a phase-to-ground capacitance of 0. the voltages from H2 to ground and H3 to ground are as high as three per unit. Although not . the load should be reasonably balanced.8.2 5 4 – Se c t io n 6 6 overload. The floating-wye/delta bank is employed to supply three. 1986).and 35-kV class systems. and externally gapped surge arresters “spat” across the external gap. This grounding will not prevent ferroresonance if a phase opens in the primary supply lines when the bank and lines are unloaded or lightly loaded. with fused cutouts at the riser pole to energize and de-energize the cable and connected transformer. The cause of these problems was ferroresonance. Three-Phase Transformers with Delta or Ungrounded-Wye Connected Primary Windings When 15-kV class voltages were selected for overhead multigrounded neutral systems. when pad-mounted and submersible transformers were first produced for UD systems. This is not due to a nonlinear resonance. Sometimes the arresters failed. to prevent ferroresonance during switching at the primary terminals. if the two transformers in the open-wye/open-delta bank are inadvertently connected to the same primary phase. During single-pole switching at the riser pole.1 microfarads per phase. or emitted unusual noises.65 pu. However. although this connection prevents ferroresonance for single-pole switching. the ferroresonant mode response in the first 12 cycles is at fundamental frequency.and four-wire delta loads in 25. the phase-to-neutral voltage at the open primary terminal can be as high as 2.8. but to voltage feedback through the secondary load (Gasal. and the transient response has not fully decayed. Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed. as the neutral will not be grounded.

and Fergestad. through a resistor. closing the switch in phase C terminates ferroresonance and eliminates the overvoltages. Most users rejected reliance on secondary load as they did not want to intentionally single-phase their customers. 3 pu H3V 2 pu The factors with the greatest effect on the likelihood of overvoltages on the open phases during the switching of a cable circuit and a connected transformer are the following: 4 pu H2V H2 Energized • Transformer kVA size (kVAT in Figure 6. shown. high overvoltages could occur and damage the customer’s load. and • Transformer exciting current at rated voltage (IE% in Figure 6.8: Three-Phase Cable-Fed Transformer with a Delta-Connected Primary Winding. if the load was not large enough. • Grounding. • Phase-to-ground capacitance (cable length) of the circuit being switched with the transformer.9: Voltage and Current Waveforms During Ferroresonance with a 150-kVA Delta/Grounded-Wye Bank. steady-state overvoltages as high as four per unit can occur during ferroresonance (Young.8). . 1968). complexity.8). • Connecting resistive load to the secondary side of the three-phase transformer during single-pole switching. • Primary voltage level (kV in Figure 6. This approach has not been widely accepted because of cost. when cable-fed transformers have the delta or ungrounded-wye primary windings. Other full-scale tests show that.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 5 5 6 Surge Arresters Fused Cutouts φA XC φC XC φB XC Cable Capacitance H3 Shielded Cable Circuit L∆ Transformer Switch Pad-Mounted Transformer kVAT kV IE% X1 H2 X2 X3 No Load H1 FIGURE 6.25 pu are as follows: 1 pu H1V H1 Energized H2 I FIGURE 6. the neutral of the wye-connected primary windings (secondary connected in delta). Measures that can limit the voltage on the open phases to 1. and the fact that it cannot be used with transformers having the delta-connected primary winding.8). Schmid. Also.

Similarly.25 pu if the inequality of Equation 6. the voltages to ground on the open phases during single-pole switching will not exceed 1. but can have voltage on them because of coupling through the transformer. the transformer is at the end of the cable circuit as in Figure 6. splices. 1992). A 1. 1968). at no load. is valid for low-loss units. Therefore. This inequality is expressed in terms of more readily available transformer and system parameters by the inequality of Equation 6. The 1. Schmid. . the conventional criteria for maximum allowed cable lengths have been based on the TNA studies for transformers with both the delta and ungrounded-wye connected primary windings (Hopkinson.25 pu. The de-energized primary terminals of the transformer are those that are not connected directly to the source system. When the phase-to-ground voltages on the open phases are limited to 1. Distribution class and riser pole MOV surge arresters can withstand temporary overvoltages of 1. Application Criteria For a three-phase unloaded transformer with the delta-connected primary windings fed through a cable circuit (as in Figure 6.25-pu temporary overvoltages without trouble. the conventional approach based on the TNA investigations of the late 1960s is used in this subsection. but it may be connected at any point along the cable. Full-scale testing with modern transformers has yet to be performed to determine if the previous approach to ferroresonance guidelines. but no-load loss does (Walling et al. In the absence of a verified new approach. MAXIMUM ALLOWED CABLE LENGTHS TO LIMIT OPEN-PHASE VOLTAGES TO 1. separable connectors. depending on the specific design and manufacturer. and Fergestad.1 times winding rated voltage.or wye-connected. 110 percent of winding rated voltage. and fused cutouts can withstand the 1.0 times arrester duty-cycle voltage rating) for one to two hours or more.8. Computer simulation of delta-wye transformers tends to indicate that the same is true for transformers with ungrounded primaries (Walling. • Limiting the length of the cable circuit being switched with the transformer. More recent investigations on grounded-wye transformers indicate that exciting current at rated voltage does not accurately reflect ferroresonance susceptibility.6 is satisfied. either delta.2 5 6 – Se c t io n 6 6 • Applying three-pole switches at the riser pole.8). Such overvoltage will not damage transformers as they can continuously withstand across their windings.25-pu line-to-neutral voltages from ferroresonance.25 pu were found using either full-scale tests (Young.25-pu voltage level is significantly below the applied voltage test given to transformers with ungrounded primary windings and the induced voltage test given to transformers with a grounded primary winding. 1992). and commonly occurring ground faults. the voltage across the windings. based on rated exciting current.25 PU The maximum cable lengths with a connected transformer that can be switched with singlepole switches so that voltages do not exceed 1. will be less than 1. cable terminators.25 times system line-to-neutral voltage (about 1. with no cable connected to the de-energized primary terminals.7. the insulation of other equipment such as cables. The results from TNA simulations are more conservative than those obtained from the full-scale tests performed in the same era. The significance of no-load loss to ferroresonance susceptibility was not understood at the time the TNA work was performed because there was good correlation between rated-voltage exciting current and ferroresonance susceptibility. or because of load on the secondary side of the transformer. • Performing the single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the three-phase transformer. 1968) or TNA simulations. 1967.. Normally. Overvoltages of this and higher magnitudes occur during ground faults. Gapped SiC arresters can withstand 1.25-pu voltage level is used for establishing ferroresonance criteria for the maximum cable length that can be switched with a connected transformer. Many users rejected three-pole switches because of their high cost in comparison to fused cutouts. as temporary overvoltages at this level should not be harmful to the system or equipment.

6.0 0.8 L∆max = 3. This is the voltage on the nameplate.312 0. so doubling the primary voltage reduces the term on the left side of the inequality by a factor of four.8 gives the following: Equation 6. The term involving primary voltage.2) = 0.8.7 kVATIE% ≥ 0. it can be seen that ferroresonant overvoltages above 1. is squared. From the inequality of Equation 6.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 5 7 6 It should be noted that Equation 6. This is equal to the line-to-line rated voltage of the primary winding in volts divided by the rated voltage exciting current in amperes. and longer cable circuits. the maximum length (L∆max) of cable circuit that can be switched with the transformer with the delta-connected primary winding. this is the total length of the cable being switched. and 6. When the transformer parameters and cable capacitance are known. so that the voltages do not exceed 1. If the cable extends beyond the transformer. Equation 6.4. CµF/M = Capacitance of the shielded single-conductor cable in microfarads per mile. This equation includes the correction for transformer winding capacitance. and at the higher primary voltage levels.006 × 5.5 × 1. higher primary voltages. XM = Equivalent exciting reactance of the transformer.3. This capacitance is found from Equation 6.280 – 12.7 ignores the capacitance contribution provided by the transformer windings.0% 12. This capacitive reactance is identified in Figure 6. = The total length of the cable being switched with the transL∆ former with delta-connected primary winding.6 XC ≥ 40 XM where: XC = Phase-to-ground capacitive reactance of one phase of the cable circuit.006 µF CXFMR Placing these values in Equation 6. Ferroresonance is more likely with small transformers. divided by √3. depending on transformer voltage and kVA rating plus the manufacturer’s design practices.5kVATIE% CXFMR × 5. Representative values are given in Tables 6.7 feet .312 µF/M (for 1/0 phase conductor with 175 mils of XLPE insulation per Table 6.7. is given by Equation 6. Use of Equation 6.47 kV 0. This transformer capacitance parameter is not readily available to utilities but it can be very important because it may equal the capacitance of 50 or 100 feet of cable. Equation 6.500 × 1.500 kVA 1.8.312 = 6. in ohms.4. kV.8 is illustrated by the following example and data: kVAT IE% kV CµF/M = = = = 1.2.25 pu.280 L∆max = – kV2CµF/M CµF/M where: CXFMR = The equivalent phase-to-ground winding capacitance of the transformer in µF 3.286 kV2CµF/ML∆ where: kVAT = Nameplate kVA rating of the three-phase transformer = Exciting current of the transformer at rated voltage in percentIE% age of rated current kV = Rated phase-to-phase voltage of the transformer primary winding in kV.25 pu are more likely to occur with smaller transformers and longer cable circuits.472 × 0. in ohms.

7kVATIE% CXFMR × 5. This tends to be true for higher loss transformers in 15-kV class systems and with the larger transformers in the 25-kV class systems. .25 pu are so short that practical applications usually cannot be made. In light of the low loss levels and small exciting currents in modern distribution transformers. All terms in Equation 6. The voltage could. the lengths that limit voltages to 1.25 pu is given by Equation 6. identified as LYmax.9 are the same as in Equation 6. When the transformer is connected to the cable circuit. If the primary voltage was 24. the allowable cable lengths with the ungrounded-wye primary winding are. there is little value in specifying maximum cable lengths for transformers with ungrounded primary windings. energizing the cable circuit with all transformers disconnected and second. and connected transformer with the floating wye-connected primary winding that can be switched so that the voltages do not exceed 1.2 5 8 – Se c t io n 6 6 This example reveals that. It is not recommended for any size transformer in 35-kV class systems.25 pu: either use three-pole switches or do single-pole switching at the transformer terminals. ferroresonant overvoltages above 1.25 pu is impractically short. rather than the grounded-wye primary connections. therefore. 1968). the third harmonic load current. From this. Phase-to-ground winding capacitance varies with rating and also greatly with transformer design practices. For three-phase transformers with the ungrounded-wye primary winding.9. This is accomplished by first. at 12. 34 percent greater than those allowed with the delta primary winding. the allowed length of cable to limit the overvoltage to 1.25 pu if the transformer was switched single phase. Equation 6. solely as a result of internal transformer capacitances.9 kV. exceed 1. 21st harmonic .280 – feet kV2CµF/M CµF/M by elbows). 15th.7 feet. . the voltages on the open phases during remote single-pole switching through a shielded cable will not exceed 1. and • To isolate the primary and secondary systems so that ground relays on the primary system do not see ground faults on the secondary system. and its odd multiples (9th.9 LYmax = 4. it is concluded that the maximum length of cable circuit. even with larger kVA transformers with the delta primary winding. From the constant terms. especially for the larger three-phase distribution transformers. SWITCHING (OPERATING) PROCEDURES TO PREVENT FERRORESONANCE If transformers with the delta or ungroundedwye primary windings must be used in the UD system. However.25 pu can be prevented by switching procedures whereby unloaded transformers and cable circuit are not switched as a single entity. The latter is effective only when the internal capacitance of the transformer is less than the critical capacitance.) do not flow in the neutral conductor of the primary system. For those units in which unacceptable overvoltages result from single-phase switching at the terminals (such as . connecting the transformers to the energized cable circuit with switching devices at the primary terminals of the transformer. Reasons sometimes given for the requirement of the delta or ungrounded-wye primary winding connections. with the ungrounded-wye primary windings. In all cases. Single-Pole Switches When only single-pole switches are available. at most. no cable is connected to the de-energized primary terminals.47 kV. there are two options for preventing ferroresonant overvoltages above 1. 6.25 pu if the ratio of XC to XM is greater than 30 (Hopkinson. are as follows: • To isolate the primary and secondary systems so that the fundamental frequency component of the unbalanced load current. three-phase ganged switches must be provided or other means used to control the overvoltages.8. prudence dictates that these transformers be switched only at the primary terminals. the winding capacitance correction would exceed the other term and this equation would yield a negative critical cable length.

8.or three-pole switches. the three-pole switch the radially fed transformer in at the transformer is opened Figure 6. Single-pole phase transformers with the delta or unswitching of transformers with ungrounded prigrounded-wye primary mary windings is not recomwindings prevents overvoltmended in 34. This is illusgle.8. Temporary Grounding of the Neutral If the three-phase transformer has the ungrounded-wye primary windings with the neutral of the wye available external to the case. where E is the rated phase-to-neutral voltage of the primary windings. load-break fusing detransformers with the transformer after the cable vices internal to the transungrounded primary circuit is energized from a reformer. where E is the phase-to-phase rated voltage of the primary.9-kV voltwill build up. former. The neutral point should be grounded only during the switching. First. STEP 2: Close the single-pole switches at the source end of the cable circuit to energize just the cable circuit. trated with an example using Similarly. referred to as pole 15 kV and below. or in the case of low-loss transformmilliseconds) or less. or switches internal to windings at 34. When the primary winding of the transformer is rated EY volts. the neutral of the wye-connected primary is brought out. mote location. the switch pole span minals to energize just the transformer may remust be one cycle or less on opening. ages for switching at the priSwitching at the transformer Do not do single-pole mary terminals to energize primary terminals can be done switching of just the transformer.6 age level. must not be too long. If the installation is made from three single-phase transformers. Similarly.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 5 9 6 the time between closing of the first pole and This procedure is effective at voltage levels of closing of the third pole. If left permanently grounded. For the three-pole switch to be effective. the neutral of the primary windings is available. STEP 3: Close the switching devices at the transformer to energize the transformer. the switching devices at the transformer are opened. harmful overvoltages will ers. the transformer may be damaged thermally if single-phasing occurs on the primary system on the source side of the grounded-wye/delta bank. the single-pole switching devices at the source end of the cable circuit are opened to de-energize just the cable. for operator safety. However. with either sinthe transformer.5-kV. single-pole switching at the transformer ternot develop. de-energizing the transformer. just the opposite procedure is used. overvoltages do not occur if the neutral is grounded during single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer. the neutral of the wye is not brought outside the tank. do the following: STEP 1: Open the switching devices at the trans- former. as long as the transformers span. This with load-break elbow conswitch is closed to energize nectors. Second. disconnecting the transformer from the cable. With pole spans of one cycle (16. . as in Figure 6. If the primary winding is rated 3 EY/E volts.5-kV systems. this switching procedure is unacceptable. Three-Pole Switches Three-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer prevents ferroresonance for either energizing or de-energizing operations. at the 24. before the cable circuit is de-energized at the To energize the cable and connected transremote location. or during switching of just the transformer. sult in high overvoltages as a result of the interA three-pole switch installed in the threenal capacitances of the transformer. To de-energize the cable circuit and transformer. If the cooperative desires to energize transformers from a remote location. Temporary neutral grounding is effective at any primary voltage level. or high overvoltages are not low loss.

25-pu voltage. From tests. and power factor capacitors connected in delta or ungrounded-wye are not connected to the secondary. overvoltages can occur when a cable circuit and connected transformer are switched with single-pole switches.9.10 illustrates the configuration of the five-legged. the cable lengths that allow singlepole switching are so short that practical systems usually cannot be operated.5-kV systems. ferroresonance and overvoltages will not occur for singlepole switching of the cable circuit and transformer or for single-pole switching at the primary terminals. Operating experience and tests showed that the effectiveness of the grounded-wye primary windings in preventing overvoltages depended on whether the transformer was assembled on a five-legged core or used triplex construction. alternative transformer designs allowing single-pole switching without objectionable overvoltages were sought by the utility industry. The performance of the five-legged core transformer with grounded-wye connected primary windings is discussed in the following subsection. These overvoltages occur due to the internal capacitances of the transformer. lowerloss transformers used in 24. CORE CONFIGURATION Most three-phase distribution transformers with grounded-wye primary windings are constructed on a five-legged.47-kV systems.10: Five-Legged Wound-Type Core with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings.2 6 0 – Se c t io n 6 6 Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Winding and Five-Legged Core For transformers with ungrounded primary windings. wound-type core. wound-type core. The two inner core loops have the same mean length and the two outer core loops have the same mean length. the following was learned: • When the three-phase transformer employs triplex construction with grounded primary windings. And installation of three-pole switching devices is expensive compared with installation of single-pole switching devices.and 34. Single-pole switching at the transformer primary terminals to energize or de-energize just the transformer (without cable connected to the de-energized primary terminals) usually prevents objectionable overvoltages in 12. In general. • When the transformer has a five-legged core and grounded-wye primary windings. Delta-connected secondary windings should not be used with grounded-wye primary windings. depending on the type of service. Some papers on ferroresonance written in the 1960s suggested that the grounded-wye primary winding connections would prevent overvoltages during single-pole switching of a cable circuit and a connected transformer. much longer lengths of cable and connected transformer can be switched when the transformer has grounded-wye primary windings rather than ungrounded primary windings without exceeding 1.5-kV systems or where lower loss transformers are applied. As a result of these limitations.and 34. but is not effective in 24. overvoltages can occur during single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the lower-kVA.9. • When the transformer has a five-legged core and grounded-wye primary windings. . Grounded-wye primary windings are used with grounded-wye secondary windings or ungrounded-wye secondary windings. but the mean length of H1 H2 H3 FIGURE 6. The core assembly is made from four individual wound-type cores. Transformers with grounded-wye primary windings cannot be constructed on a three-legged core as common unbalances in the primary system give severe heating in the transformer tank. Figure 6.

the magnetic circuit of the fivelegged core transformer in Figure 6. Schmid.and 34.. The voltages appearing at the open-circuited terminals demonstrate that magnetic coupling exists between the phases of the five-legged core transformer. However. and Fergestad.29 pu. recent tests with newer transformers having lower core losses show that the currently accepted application criteria for allowed cable lengths need to be modified to take into account the lower losses. 1992).. and Borst. However.. the criteria for allowed cable length to limit the overvoltages to 1. 1975.4 pu (Walling et al. Tests run in the 1970s on transformers rated 12.47/7.10 shows that. only the primary winding for each phase is depicted. This magnetic coupling between phases.47 pu.10. the peak line-to-ground voltage was 1. or the internal capacitance of the transformer if high enough. The significance of the age of this information is that the losses of transformers on which the application criteria in this section are based are higher than the losses of many newer transformers.2 kV showed that the rms value and the peak value of the voltage from the open terminal to ground did not exceed winding rated rms and peak voltages.9. core loss is a better indicator of the critical capacitance than is exciting current as used in the older guidelines (Walling et al. but the peak value is about two percent above rated peak voltage as a result of harmonics (Millet.2 kV also show that the rms value of the voltages from the open terminals to ground does not exceed winding rated rms voltage. These transformers had lower loss levels than did the transformers used in prior tests in the early 1970s. and Borst. 1968). test results made available in the summer of 1992 show that the five-legged core transformer internal capacitances can react with the magnetic circuits to produce overvoltages when the switching is done at the primary terminals of the smaller low-loss transformers used in 24. for practical purposes.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 6 1 6 an inner core loop is longer than the mean length of an outer core loop.5-kV systems.25 pu. In Figure 6. Swanson. 1990) and personal experience. respectively (Smith. The voltage appearing on the open phases is not sinusoidal as is the applied voltage because of the nonlinear characteristics of the core loops. when rated voltage is applied between the line terminal of any one winding and ground.5-kV systems (Walling et al. is based on the published literature (Smith. the peak line-to-ground voltage was 1. 1990). switching at the primary terminals of the grounded-wye primary five-legged core transformers prevents overvoltages in systems with voltages of 15 kV and below. . 1992). based on tests in the 1970s. Millet. if voltages from two phases of a three-phase system are applied between the line terminal and ground of any two windings. In fact. The secondary winding for each phase is wound concentric to the primary winding. The material on ferroresonance with five-legged core grounded-wye transformers in this section and. Most published information on the performance of the five-legged core grounded-wye/ grounded-wye transformer is based on tests and TNA simulations done in the early 1970s. Mairs. Similarly.1 pu. produces a series/parallel LC circuit in which overvoltages are possible. Thus. 1992). 1975). with all other windings open circuited. Disregarding the effects of transformer winding capacitances. The maximum peak voltage during ferroresonance with the five-legged core grounded-wye transformer is 2. in conjunction with the capacitance to ground (neutral) of the primary cable connected to the open phases. voltage appears between the line terminal and ground of the open windings. the maximum steady-state overvoltages possible with the delta or ungrounded-wye windings are 4 pu (Young. for transformers applied in 34.9-kV systems. From tests on transformers applied in 24. Swanson. voltage appears between the line terminal and ground of the open winding.47/7. Tests run more recently with low-loss transformers rated 12. and Stuehm. in particular. Tests on the lower loss five-legged core grounded-wye transformers of more recent design show that the sustained voltages during ferroresonance are as high as 2. Mairs. before losses were evaluated by most utilities. and Stuehm. In comparison.

transformer core loss level.41 pu 1 Cyc. at 60 Hz __2. the voltages to ground on the open phases are at a minimum. MAXIMUM ALLOWED CABLE LENGTHS TO LIMIT OPEN-PHASE VOLTAGES TO 1. __1.5 pu. The distance at which this maximum occurs depends primarily on the kVA rating of the transformer. the voltage increases. 225-.77 pu __1. and it is during these types of responses that the transformer .02 pu __1. Figure 6. Here the waveform never repeats itself and there are no identifiable cyclical patterns. Roughly. The response represented by the two voltage waveforms in Figure 6. the voltage waveforms also are cyclical at fundamental frequency. and Borst. at 60 Hz (a) __. In Figure 6. at 60 Hz (d) 1 Cyc.12 shows examples of the steady-state. and cable capacitance. based on full-scale tests with 150-.12(b).12(c).09 pu 1 Cyc.11: Three-Phase Cable-Fed Transformer with a GroundedWye Primary Winding on a Five-Legged Core. as only odd harmonics are present. The type of response and peak value of the overvoltages on the open phases for single-pole switching are affected to a great extent by the distance between the switches and transformer. Nonharmonic responses also occur during ferroresonance with the five-legged core transformers. at 60 Hz FIGURE 6.12: Open-Phase Voltage Waveforms with Five-Legged Core. reaching a maximum of about two to 2.25 PU Figure 6.1 pu. but they are not symmetrical about the time axis because of the presence of even harmonics.71 pu 1 Cyc.04 pu 1 Cyc. the overvoltages are higher when just one phase is open. at 60 Hz 1 Cyc. 1975). Grounded-Wye Transformers.12(a) is cyclical at fundamental frequency and symmetrical. at 60 Hz (c) __.2 6 2 – Se c t io n 6 6 Surge Arresters Fused Cutouts φA Shielded Cable Circuit LGY H1 X1 No Load H3 XC Cable Capacitance H2 X3 X2 Transformer Pad-Mounted Transformer Five-Legged Core Switch φC φB XC XC FIGURE 6. Whether one or two phases are connected to the source also affects the responses. Although the transformer is connected to the end of the cable. These responses produced the maximum voltage of 2. primary voltage. The length of the circuit is designated as LGY. as illustrated in Figure 6. As the cable length being switched with the transformer increases. for a given cable length.0 pu 1 Cyc. Swanson. phase-to-ground voltages on the open phases during single-pole switching. and 500-kVA transformers (Smith. the system response is the same irrespective of where the transformer is located along its length.11 shows a five-legged core transformer fed through a cable circuit. The reason for this is that the voltage drop through the series impedance of the cable circuit is negligible during ferroresonance. when switching is performed at the primary terminals of the five-legged core transformer (no cable connected to the de-energized terminals). Generally. at 60 Hz (b) __1.

but does not serve any other transformers. no-load loss of the transformer at rated excitation in watts The guidelines in this subsection are based on more recent research. for example.11.11.10. and 6.7. Equation 6.11. the voltage on the nameplate Ct = Total capacitance in µF connected to the open phase. the inequality of Equation 6. If the primary cable extends beyond the transformer in Figure 6. New low-loss designs and wider variations in design flux density have shown the pitfalls of exciting-current-based guidelines. LGYmax. This internal capacitance adds to that of the cable. Where possible.10 combined with an approximate empirical relationship between transformer rating and internal capacitance and solved for LGY.8 provided later in this section. however. This investigation concluded that core loss is the key parameter defining the critical capacitance creating ferroresonant overvoltage. the actual no-load loss should be used in Equation 6. reflecting the fact that the percentage of losses tends to decrease for larger transformers (Walling. as shown in Figure 6. The older guidelines yield a longer critical cable length for a transformer that has a high measured exciting current because of a high internal capacitance.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 6 3 6 can be very noisy because of magnetostriction. LGY is the total length of cable being switched with the unloaded transformer. that can be switched with the transformer so that the voltages do not exceed 1. 6.4 – 2. This loss relationship is also used in the guidelines of Tables 6.10 kV2Ct ≤ 0. This wide variation occurs because the loss evaluation factors used in transformer procurement by various utilities vary widely. including both cable and internal transformer capacitance Pnl = Three-phase. Equation 6. even when bid to the same loss evaluation specification.25 pu during single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer.25 kV2 kV Equation 6. connected to cable circuit as shown in Figure 6. 1992).and 30-Hz subharmonic steady-state responses also occur with the five-legged core transformer.13 Log10 (kVA)] where: LGY = Length of cable in feet with connected transformer having the grounded-wye primary winding and five-legged core . Work completed in 1992 has re-examined the ferroresonance susceptibility of grounded wye/wye transformers using a five-legged core (Walling.6.00493 Pnl where: kV = Rated phase-to-phase voltage of the transformer primary winding in kV. Application Criteria For the voltage to ground to be limited to 1. and the actual critical cable length should be shorter than for that of a transformer with a smaller exciting current that is more inductive. Equation 6. They apply to a single transformer.10 must be satisfied (Walling. The maximum length of cable circuit. Transformer no-load loss values can vary widely for transformers of a given kVA rating. 1992). One such shortcoming. This equation is the inequality of Equation 6. and the core losses of various manufacturers’ designs also vary.11 LGY = 1 CµF/M 26.12(d). From the inequality of Equation 6. 1992).48 0.11 but this is not always feasible when standard practices are developed. is that the measured exciting current on a transformer can be dominated by the winding capacitance.25 pu is given by Equation 6. Previous guidelines using exciting current as a basis have been generally satisfactory because core losses and exciting current have historically correlated. Twenty.54 – 1. overvoltages above 1.12 Pnl = kVA [4. without secondary load.25 pu are more likely to occur with the smaller or more efficient transformers at the higher primary voltage levels and with longer cable circuits.0 Pnl kVA0.12 provides an approximate empirical relationship between transformer kVA rating and no-load losses.

47-kV system if the voltages are not to exceed 1. For a transformer with greater no-load loss than assumed here. for most practical situations.11 can yield a negative maximum cable length. highly efficient transformers.25 pu can occur for single-phase switching at the transformer terminals. For 34.9kV system if the voltages on the open phases are not to exceed 1. Of course. Example 6.0 – 2.25 pu even when switched at the terminals without connected cable.25 pu during singlepole switching.12: Pnl = 150 [4.11 and 6.4 feet even if the transformer is assumed to have no capacitance. The effect of loss variations do not make an exactly proportional effect on maximum length because of the winding capacitance term (the second term on the right-hand side of Equation 6.1 illustrates the use of Equations 6. as well as low-loss 24.2 1500.11 and solving the equations gives the following.470.9 kV. the allowed cable lengths with the smaller and medium-size transformers are so short that.312 µF/M = Capacitance of the shielded cable circuit in microfarads per mile Placing these values into Equations 6.2 6 4 – Se c t io n 6 6 EXAMPLE 6. if the primary voltage level is 24. The maximum cable length calculated above (136 feet) is sufficiently long to permit single-pole switching in many practical applications in which a single transformer is fed radially from an overhead line or from a switching compartment in a UD system.12 to approximate typical core losses.9-kV transformers.12 and 6.47 kV = Rated phase-to-phase voltage of the transformer primary winding in kV CµF/M = 0.8 is 5. = 150 kVA Application Data Tables—Maximum Cable Lengths With Equation 6. application data tables can be prepared from typical data.8 lists the maximum cable lengths that can be switched with the transformer in a 24. a negative cable length is physically meaningless except that it indicates that the transformer internal capacitance is likely to be large enough that sustained voltages exceeding 1. But. all other parameters being the same. From Equation 6. the total length of cable being switched should be limited to the value given in the table. the internal transformer capacitances of the smaller kVA-rated transformers are sufficient to create ferroresonant overvoltages in excess of 1. the maximum cable length will be longer. Lengths this short will not allow single-pole switching for any practical application.12 and 6.13 Log109 (150)] = 312. with the delta-connected primary winding. Likewise. the length of cable that can be switched with a five-legged core transformer with grounded-wye primary winding is easily calculated. At the 12. In comparison. consequently.472 LGY = 136 feet For transformers that have small kVA ratings and.11). Note the effect of cable size on allowed lengths.25 0.5-kV systems. a more efficient transformer will have a shorter maximum length. But in 24. or transformers with high primary voltage ratings. 24.9-kV Systems Table 6. but serves only one transformer. Equation 6. and using Equation 6.12.4 26.312 12. 12. Equations 6.11.11 give a maximum allowable cable length of 24 feet. The maximum allowed cable lengths to limit . single-pole switching must be performed at the primary terminals of the transformers.54 – 1.2 watts From Equation 6.7 lists the maximum cable lengths that can be energized or de-energized with the transformer (unloaded) in a 12. If the cable extends beyond the transformer.11: LGY = 1 312.1: Maximum Lengths of Cable Circuit Possible.48 12. kVA = Nameplate kVA rating of the three-phase transformer with the five-legged core kV = 12.47-kV Systems Table 6. and typical core loss values are assumed for each kVA rating. in many cases the allowed cable lengths permit remote single-pole switching of radially fed transformers.9-kV systems. Values are given for transformers fed by cables of three different sizes.25 pu. From this. the allowed length of cable found from Equation 6.47-kV primary voltage level. low no-load loss wattage. and everything else remains the same.

TABLE 6.5 150 225 300 500 750 1. there are two options for preventing overvoltages above 1. Single-Pole Switches For situations in which overvoltages above 1. 34.150 1.5 150 225 300 500 750 1. Cable capacitances of #2. gang-operated switches when energizing or deenergizing a cable circuit and connected transformer.25 pu with the smaller kVA.8: Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 24. based on 260 mils of TR-XLPE insulation. 1/0.25 PU.426 1.426 1.500 Assumed No-Load Loss (w) 182 250 312 423 522 745 968 1.619 1. when the transformer is being energized or de-energized. overvoltages are likely with singlepole switching at the transformer terminals even without connected cable.47-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1.25 per unit. Maximum Cable Length in Feet for the Indicated Cable Size Grounded-Wye Primary #2 1/0 4/0 100 144 184 257 323 473 623 745 930 1.11. based on 220 mils of TR-XLPE insulation.000 2.500 2.750 the voltage to 1.500 Assumed No-Load Loss (w) 182 250 312 423 522 745 968 1. install a three-pole switching device in the transformer.5-kV Systems Table 6.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 6 5 6 TABLE 6. For the smaller kVA transformers.5-kV transformers.500 2.141 87 126 161 225 283 413 545 652 813 924 998 64 93 119 166 208 305 401 480 599 681 735 Transformer Nameplate (kVA) 75 112.and 34.318 µFarads/mile.619 1.150 1. Although this approach is effective for any size transformer at 15-kV and below.7: Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 12.256 and 0. and 4/0 cables are 0.9-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1. To limit the voltages in these cases.25 PU.263.000 1. Cable capacitances of 1/0 and 4/0 cables are 0. The second is to do single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the transformer so that. Allowed cable lengths are longer with 260-mil insulation because of lower capacitance. the allowed cable lengths are sufficiently long that single-pole switching can be performed. . virtually excluding the use of single-pole switches other than for switching at the primary terminals of the larger transformers without cable connected to the de-energized terminals. The first is to use only three-pole.000 1. low-loss 24. 0.9 gives the maximum cable length with a connected transformer that can be energized or de-energized with single-pole switches in a 34.357 µFarads/ mile. Single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer cannot be performed in many practical systems.25 pu.9.750 Note. For the larger kVA transformers.5kV system if the voltages on the open phases are not to exceed 1. SWITCHING (OPERATING) PROCEDURES TO PREVENT FERRORESONANCE If the cable lengths are longer than those listed in the tables or calculated from Equation 6.25 pu with the small and medium kVA five-legged core grounded-wye transformers are very short. Maximum Cable Length in Feet for the Indicated Cable Size Grounded-Wye Primary 1/0 4/0 5 12 19 31 42 69 96 118 151 172 185 4 10 15 25 34 56 77 95 122 139 149 Transformer Nameplate (kVA) 75 112.000 2. no cable is connected to the deenergized primary terminals.057 1.25 pu will not occur from single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the five-legged core Note. and 0. it may not limit the overvoltages to 1. The allowed cable lengths are very short even with the larger kVA transformers.230.

open the single-pole device at the transformer. long cable circuits. close the single-pole switches at the transformer to energize the unloaded transformer.9: Maximum Allowed Cable Lengths in 34.500 2.5-kV transformers also will prevent overvoltages above 1. Note. Three-pole switches in the lower kVA. Such procedures will be illustrated with the arrangement in Figure 6.426 1. Figure 6. grounded-wye transformers (power factor capacitors are not connected to the secondary).5-kV Systems to Limit Open-Phase Voltages to 1. Then open the single-pole switches to de-energize the cable. Switching procedures exist that allow single-pole switching without producing overvoltages above 1.25 pu with the five-legged core grounded-wye transformer.5-kV primary voltage levels.and 34.and 34.11. or at the end of.9. open the single-pole switching devices at the transformer.5-kV transformers.750 To energize the cable and transformer. GROUNDED-WYE TRANSFORMER TANK HEATING The five-legged core transformer with groundedwye primary windings can experience severe tank heating during certain unbalances in the system. when energizing and de-energizing cable circuits and connected transformers with single-pole switches. This is discussed later in this section.318 µFarads/mile. especially at the 24.500 Assumed No-Load Loss (w) 182 250 312 423 522 745 968 1. the switching devices for the cable circuit are open. there are limitations on allowed cable lengths. it can be adapted to radial systems with more than one transformer and to multiple cable segments. Maximum Cable Length in Feet for the Indicated Cable Size Grounded-Wye Primary 1/0 4/0 Do not switch single-phase. of course. Although the preceding example is for the simple case of a radially fed transformer at the end of the cable circuit.25 PU. where the cable circuit does not extend beyond the transformer. the three-pole switch will prevent ferroresonant overvoltages even if power factor capacitors are connected to the secondary side of the transformer. Ferroresonance with Cable-Fed.9and 34.256 and 0.11. switching procedures exist that allow the energization of the smaller kVA transformers connected to.13 illustrates how this happens.5 150 225 300 500 750 1. Although the five-legged core prevents tank heating for most unbalances. But these procedures may be difficult to implement with multiple transformers on a circuit. lowloss 24. Furthermore. Finally. Three-Pole Switches Three-pole switches allow the energization and de-energization of the circuit and unloaded transformer with grounded-wye primary without ferroresonant overvoltages if the switch pole span does not exceed one cycle. To de-energize the transformer and cable circuit in Figure 6. Cable capacitances of 1/0 and 4/0 cables are 0.150 1. the riser-pole fuse in the faulted phase blows. lower kVA 24. some unbalances have caused transformer fires. even at terminals 1 5 16 26 35 47 71 58 1 4 13 21 28 38 54 47 Transformer Nameplate (kVA) 75 112.000 1. excluding the lower loss. FIVE-LEGGED CORE. use the opposite procedure. The voltage from terminal H1 to ground at the transformer is zero. based on 260 mils of TR-XLPE insulation. Three-Phase Transformers with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings and Triplex Construction With grounded-wye primary windings and fivelegged core construction. Then close the singlepole switches for the cable circuit to energize just the cable.000 2.2 6 6 – Se c t io n 6 6 TABLE 6.25 pu that otherwise can occur with single-pole switching at the primary terminals. with .9. Specifically.619 1. With a solid ground fault on phase A of the shielded cable circuit.

ConAn ungrounded phase-toheating during certain sequently.13: Overhead System Supplying a Cable-Fed. the same voltage is applied to two of the primary phases downstream FIGURE 6. A solid ungrounded fault can occur in an overhead approximately rated voltage line if an insulator breaks at an applied from terminal H2 to angle pole and the phase conFive-legged core ground and from terminal H3 ductor is pulled across one of transformers with to ground. Consequently. B and C do not blow and the line crews jumper two phases transformer remains energized together to bring temporary until switching is manually service to single-phase conperformed. and cause tank heating unless the transfuses at the riser pole supplying the two faulted former is quickly de-energized. but tank heating does not occur. tank conditions impress approximately 58 percent heating does not occur. All faults on circuits H1 X1 No XC made with concentric neutral cable will be from Load one or more phases to ground. say phase B. the tank. if the solid zero-sequence voltage across the primary windfault to ground (concentric neutral) involves two ings of the transformer. Because the transsumers following a fault. with only the overcurCable Shield and rent devices in the faulted phases opening. Similarly. tank heating in XC five-legged core transformers is unlikely. ground fault on phase A. induce currents into the of the single-conductor cables in Figure 6. the fuses in phases phase fault also happens when system unbalances. the remains energized until switching is manually time to produce high temperatures is a function performed. Cable Capacitance Line-to-ground faults. Because the fivephases blow and one phase of the transformer legged core transformer is not symmetrical. φC when all segments of the primary feeder beH2 X3 X2 H3 XC tween the substation and transformer are made φB with concentric neutral cable. Concentric Neutral would have caused excessive tank heating if the Riser Pole transformer in the preceding example had been Line Fuses constructed on a three-legged core. terminals of the transformer. The current in the the other two phase conducB and C phase fuses at the tors. That is. Manufacturing tolerances grounded-wye riser pole is due to the load and/or different preloadings primary windings can on the transformer and a small are reasons only one of the experience severe tank component fed back to the two line fuses blows.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 6 7 6 The five-legged core prevents tank heating in transformers with the grounded-wye primary Pad-Mounted Transformer windings during phase-to-ground faults whether Fused Cutouts Five-Legged Core Shielded Cable Circuit or not single-pole overcurrent devices are inφA stalled in the primary feeder. If a solid ungrounded phase-to-phase fault occurs from phases B to C in Figure 6.13.13 on the overhead line and the fuse in only one of the two faulted phases blows. These former is constructed on a five-legged core. Grounded-Wye from the fuses and to two of the high voltage Transformer on a Five-Legged Core. of which two terminals are fed from the same Surge Arresters Overhead MGN Feeder Multigrounded Neutral . then φA φB φC Single-Phase Reclosers phase C voltage is applied to terminals H2 and H3 of the transformer and phase A voltage is applied to terminal H1.

with only two of the three singleondary load is constant impedance connected pole overcurrent devices opening. tank heating will not of the transformer are eneroccur. as the primary circuits (see Figure 6. If all sechead feeders.13). That is. thus. the induction level at rated voltload. terminals.13. When the primary ing with a five-legged core transformer will not windings are connected in grounded-wye and occur from ungrounded phasethe secondary windings are to-phase faults because all connected in either groundedthree phases are de-energized. In Figure 6. Regardless. There is no possibility primary windings are is used for all primary circuits of tank heating for unbalances not susceptible to from the station to all transwhere two or three terminals ferroresonance. The voltage on the open phase will coldevices at the same voltage. secondary such that the secondary load deterwhich caused the bushings to leak oil. tank heating inature and de-energize the transformer before the cidents have occurred for an open primary oil reaches the flash point. The effectiveness of the eutectic fuse links is not documented in the literature. However. Because the unimpedance connected from phase to phase. switching. tank heatillustrated in Figure 6. rated voltovercurrent devices are used. riser pole and sufficient load is connected to the tanks have heated the oil above the flash point. a fire starts. or below. The tank load is connected from both phase to phase and heating raises the transformer oil temperature phase to neutral and may not be balanced.14. the tank currents are former have a zero-sequence component of 50 higher and heating occurs in a shorter time than percent and tank heating can occur. and grounded three-phase fault applies 100 percent balanced. Also. the bushings leak. the voltages impressed on the transzero-sequence voltage. assume a fuse opens at the age. if a primary phase phase. age from the same primary However. the primary cable is so short Ungrounded three-phase solid faults on overthat its capacitance is not a factor. Regardless. tank heating will not three phases downstream from the overcurrent occur. if ungrounded phase-tothere is no magnetic coupling with grounded-wye phase faults are impossible bebetween phases of the transcause concentric neutral cable former. several utilities have indicated the euTRIPLEX TRANSFORMER CORE tectic fuse links prevented severe tank heating CONFIGURATION… that otherwise would have occurred with fuse Three-phase distribution transformers with links that do not respond to oil temperature. regardless of the primary circuit . the total secondary rents are the main source of heating. they are not susopens in the absence of a fault. If all secondary load is constant five-legged core transformer. or phase in the absence of a fault. the five-legged ceptible to ferroresonance during single-pole core transformer may experience tank heating. If all load is for the ungrounded phase-to-phase fault. A few a portion is induction motor. Then the same voltlapse to zero. and other design parameters. itive-sequence impedance. even when single-pole gized at. In an actual system. which mines the voltage appearing at the transformer caused a fire. and because there is an inward heat flow.2 6 8 – Se c t io n 6 6 depending on the connection of the secondary primary phase. just as for a ground fault on the age is applied to all three HV terminals of the primary cable. During three-phase induction motors that maintain a these conditions. formers. Triplex transformers Or. tank heating will not The I2R losses in the tank from the tank curoccur. the currents in the transformer speed such that the motors’ negative-sequence fuses usually are not high enough to blow the impedance is less than one-half the motors’ posfuse unless a short circuit develops. wye or ungrounded-wye. energize all from phase to neutral. it is difficult users have applied eutectic fuse links inside the to predict whether tank heating will occur with five-legged core transformer to sense oil temperjust an open phase. triplex construction have three single-phase If only three-pole overcurrent devices are in core-coil assemblies inside a common tank.

The magnitude of the voltage to ground on the open primary phase is determined primarily by the ratio of the phaseto-ground load to the phase-to-phase load on the secondary side. The phase-to-ground voltage on the open phase almost always is less than nominal.15: Cable-Fed. and the phase-to-ground capacitive reactance of the primary feeder. may cause ferroresonance. If the capacitors are connected in groundedwye (from phase to neutral) on the secondary Surge Arresters Fused Cutouts φA φC φB Shielded Cable Circuit L Transformer Switch Pad-Mounted Transformer Triplex Core H1 X1 No Load H3 H2 X3 X2 Cable Capacitance FIGURE 6. Whether it does depends on the connections of the secondary capacitors. single-pole switching remote from the transformer or at the transformer. Triplex-Core Transformer with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings. although voltages five to 10 percent above nominal phase-to-ground voltage are theoretically possible. With no capacitive coupling between phases of the primary cable circuit. with no other load connected to the secondary. the magnitude and power factor of the phase-to-phase secondary load.15 shows a triplex transformer with grounded-wye primary and grounded-wye secondary windings fed through single conductor shielded cables. with no magnetic coupling between phases of the transformer. …WITHOUT SECONDARY POWER FACTOR CORRECTION CAPACITORS Figure 6. and with no load on the secondary. …WITH SECONDARY POWER FACTOR CORRECTION CAPACITORS If capacitors are connected to the secondary side of the triplex-core transformer having the grounded-wye primary windings and groundedwye secondary windings. voltage appears on the open primary phases. the transformer leakage impedance. . single-pole switching does not cause ferroresonance or overvoltages. length or voltage. The voltage is due to the phase-to-phase connected load on the secondary applying voltage to the secondary (LV) terminals corresponding to the open primary phases. If lagging power factor load is connected to the secondary during single-pole switching. regardless of the length of the primary cable circuit. if it is made with single-conductor shielded cables and ungrounded capacitors are not connected to the secondary system at the time of switching.14: Triplex-Type Wound Core with Grounded-Wye Primary Windings.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 6 9 6 H1 H2 H3 FIGURE 6.

when single-pole switching is performed on the primary side of the triplex-core transformer. Fused Single-Pole Switches L1(C1) SW1 L2(C2) T1 kVA1 PNL1 Lj(Cj) Ti kVAi PNLi TN-1 kVAN-1 PNLN-1 LS(CS) TN kVAN PNLN L3(C3) Symbols Lj . DiPietro and Hopkinson (1976) studied this situation. wound-core designs.25 pu. Ferroresonance in Underground Feeders Having More Than One Transformer When there is more than one three-phase transformer on a cable circuit when single-pole switching is performed. ferroresonance is not a concern and operators can design and switch the system without developing complex procedures. With triplex construction. APPLICATION CRITERIA Transformers with delta or ungrounded-wye primary windings are not recommended in UD systems that use single-pole switching. ferroresonance and overvoltages will not occur for single-pole switching on the primary side. however.25 pu was the same as if there were just one transformer on the circuit. the total length of cable being switched should be limited so that the voltage to ground does not exceed 1. as well as three-wire delta services.15.Capacitance of section j in µf/mile T2 kVA2 PNL2 FIGURE 6. The secondary is connected in grounded-wye or ungrounded-wye. Most capacitors for application in low-voltage secondary systems are connected in delta. either at the primary terminals of the triplex-core transformer or remote from the transformer. provided an equivalent capacitive reactance and an equivalent magnetizing reactance were found. is virtually eliminated. three-phase transformers supplying four-wire wye services. should have grounded-wye primary windings. They concluded that the criterion for limiting the voltage to ground on the open phase to 1. there is no need to develop special switching procedures to prevent ferroresonance. either at the primary terminals of the triplex-core transformer or remote from the transformer. Their investigations were performed on the TNA with transformers having the deltaconnected HV windings. Thus. If triplex-core transformers are used. inherently heavier and may cost more than five-legged. secondary capacitors should be disconnected.Length of section j in feet Cj . using the no-load-loss-based approach presented in this section. the possibility of tank heating and ferroresonance. If the capacitors are connected in delta or ungrounded-wye on the secondary system ahead of the service disconnect switch in Figure 6. which can occur with fivelegged core transformers. In UD systems with single-pole switching on the primary. This method can be extended to five-legged core. grounded-wye primary transformers. Also.16: Circuit with “S” Cable Sections and “N” Five-Legged Core Grounded-Wye Primary Transformers. ferroresonance and overvoltages can occur for single-pole switching on the primary side. .2 7 0 – Se c t io n 6 6 system ahead of the service disconnect switch in Figure 6. Triplex transformers are.15.

47 kV.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 7 1 6 Equation 6.4 + kVA0.476 [kVA10. Table 6.25 pu if the inequality of Equation 6.C.13 [C1µF/ML1 + C2µF/ML2 + CjµF/MLj + CSµF/MLS] + 2. “N.16. all transformers are assumed to have the same rated voltage N = Number of transformers connected to the cable circuit during the switching The multiple transformer criterion given is for cable circuits with transformers having the grounded-wye primary windings and constructed on a five-legged core.O. the number of three-phase cable sections.17 and Example 6. which has “S” three-phase cable sections and “N” three-phase transformers. “S.2.13 is satisfied. the voltage to ground during single-pole switching at SW1 will not exceed 1.Normally closed separable connector . There are no restrictions in the topology of the circuit to which Equation 6. However.Length of section j in feet Cj . N.4 + kVA20. With reference to the system in Figure 6.4 + kVAN0.Capacitance of section j in µf/mile T4 kVA4 PNL4 FIGURE 6.13 is applied.13 is demonstrated with the three-phase system in Figure 6. Each cable section “j” can have a different length and capacitance pu of length. assuming the system phase-tophase voltage is 12.25 26 [Pnl1 + Pnl2 + Pnli + PnlN] kV2 where: CjµF/M = Capacitance of cable section “j” in microfarads per mile = Length of cable section “j” in feet Lj S = Number of cable sections in the system during the switching operation kVAi = Nameplate kVA rating of three-phase transformer “i” that is connected to the circuit being switched = No-load loss in watts of three-phase transformer “i” that is Pnli connected to the circuit being switched kV = Rated phase-to-phase voltage in kV of the primary windings of the transformers on the circuit.2. it assumes all transformers are three-phase. and each transformer “i” can have different noload loss and kVA rating. When Equation 6.4 ] ≤ kV0.10 lists the transformer and cable data for the system.13 applies.” on the circuit need not be the same.17: Circuit Configuration for Switching Example 6.” and the number of three-phase transformers. Fused SinglePole Switches 3-Way Junction L1(C1) L2(C2) L3(C3) L4(C4) N. five-legged core units. . Application of Equation 6.Normally opened separable connector Lj . T1 kVA1 PNL1 L5(C5) T2 kVA2 PNL2 T3 kVA3 PNL3 Symbols .

In Figure 6. SWITCHING (OPERATING) PROCEDURES TO PREVENT VOLTAGES ABOVE 1. the entire system could be energized by closing the single-pole switches at the source end of cable section 1.476 (5000.25 pu.427) + (280 × 0. T2.10.167(745 + 850 + 810 + 182) or 12. .5-kV systems).4 + 2250.133 is not less than 432. lower kVA units in 724. The normally open point of the loop is at transformer T3.9.10 into Equation 6.4 + 2250. 1. even on 12.13 gives the following: If all transformers in Figure 6.427) + (280 × 0. Assuming that cable section 4 is disconnected from transformer T2.500 × 0.13 as follows: [(330 × 0. Transformer Data Number T1 T2 T3 T4 Rating (kVA) 500 225 300 75 No-Load Loss (w) 745 850 810 182 Section Number 1 2 3 4 5 Note.25 pu.and 34. Transformer and Cable Data for the System of Figure 6.476 (5000.269 EXAMPLE 6. and T3 are loop-feed units with two HV bushings per phase.427 0.17 employed triplex construction (grounded-wye primary windings).427) + (130 × 0.470. Cable Circuit Data Size (AWG) 4/0 4/0 4/0 4/0 2 Length (feet) 330 280 350 1. This is possible because switching at the primary terminals without cable connected to the de-energized primary terminals and without capacitors on the secondary does not produce voltages above 1.470.427) + (1.427) + (350 × 0.427 0.4) ≤ 0. transformers T1.4 + 750.427) + (350 × 0.47-kV circuits. and T4 with single-pole switching at the source end of cable section 1.269)] + 2. assuming that load is not connected to the transformers. this example illustrates that energizing practical multitransformer loop circuits on a single-pole switching basis often cannot be performed without creating ferroresonant overvoltages in excess of 1.4 + 750.500 feet.133 > 432 As 1.167(745 + 850 + 182) or 12. Triplex transformers greatly simplify operating procedures.25 480 > 297 As 480 is still more than 297. single-pole switching at the source end of cable section 1 causes phase-to-ground voltages above 1.17. place the data in Table 6. and transformer T4 is a radial-fed unit supplied from the three-way junction. Based on 175 mil TR-XLPE Insulation.25 PU When transformers have groundedwye primary windings (five-legged core). and prevent ferroresonance if a conductor or jumper opens at light load.427) + (130 × 0. procedures can be developed that allow single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformers without producing voltages above 1. To determine if the entire system can be energized with the singlepole switches at the source end of cable section 1. placing the data into Equation 6.25 pu.427 0. T2.2 7 2 – Se c t io n 6 6 TABLE 6.2: Energizing Multiple-Transformer System with Single-Pole Switches.500 130 Capacitance (µF/mile) 0. and voltages above 1.25 pu would not occur.269)] + 2.427 0.25 1.10 show that cable section 4 is quite long. [(330 × 0.4 + 3000. reduce the time to energize or de-energize a circuit with multiple transformers.25 pu (excluding the lower loss.17. which suggests that disconnecting cable section 4 from transformer T2 may enable energizing transformers T1. The data in Table 6.4) ≤ 0.

47-kV primary level for many situations.13. floating-wye. The second option. First. When the five-legged core transformers have grounded-wye primary windings. or else uses three single-phase transformers with grounded-wye primary connection. the number of three-pole switches required in the 15-kV class systems may be small because of the relatively . a large number of three-pole switches will be required. use only three-pole switches to energize and de-energize cable circuits and their connected transformers if any of the transformers have primary windings connected in either delta. With Equation 6. cable-fed transformers with openwye/open-delta connections are not susceptible to ferroresonance during single-pole switching. design and operating procedures that limit the voltages on the open phases to 1. Ferroresonance always should be considered when you are switching in UD systems. Single-Pole Switches Figure 6.Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 7 3 6 Also. These are summarized in the following subsections.5-kV systems. For conditions other than those defined above. The second option is the recommended approach for new systems and additions. If the transformers have ungrounded primary windings. When the transformers have grounded-wye primary windings and are constructed on a fivelegged core. For radially fed transformers. and switching compartment. When the transformers have ungrounded primary windings.25 pu.5-kV voltage level. if only three-pole switching is performed to energize the cable circuit and connected transformer. which enables singlepole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer. With the lower loss. or grounded-wye windings. Also.9-kV voltage level.9. overvoltages above 1.25 pu.25 pu during single-pole switching are available. However. and especially at the 34. so that the voltages do not exceed 1. having three-pole switches at each loop-feed transformer may be difficult to justify economically.25 pu. lower kVA transformers used in 24.17 shows numerous possibilities for energizing or de-energizing a system with singlepole switches when the transformers are loop feed and load-break separable connectors are used at each transformer. the possibility of ferroresonance always exists.and 34. However.25 pu. DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM DESIGN Primary Cable Circuit Length Ferroresonant overvoltages can be limited to 1. Summary of Techniques for Preventing Ferroresonance in Underground Systems There are two options for preventing ferroresonance under all conditions that can exist in the UD system if all capacitor banks are connected in grounded wye. switching procedures can be developed for taking a circuit out of service and then restoring it.25 pu occur when switching at the terminals of the transformer. But at the 24. tables can be developed giving the maximum length of cable that can be switched with a transformer of a given size. Three-Pole Switches Three-pole switches at switching enclosures and in three-phase loop-feed transformers with the grounded-wye primary windings will allow the greatest flexibility for energizing and de-energizing circuits and connected transformers. the cable lengths that can be energized or de-energized with single-pole switches without producing voltages above 1. limiting the length is almost always not practical. by limiting the length of the primary cable circuit that can be switched with the transformer. Three-Pole Switches Another system design option for controlling overvoltages is to use only three-pole switches at locations where single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer(s) will produce voltages above 1. when designing the system. This second option also prevents ferroresonance should a jumper or conductor open under light load conditions. uses only grounded-wye primary windings and triplex construction for three-phase transformers.25 pu are long enough that systems can be designed and operated at the 12. single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the transformer with ungrounded primary windings can produce voltages to ground above 1. the cable lengths are short. Furthermore. overvoltages will not occur. junction.

To energize the system. These switching procedures generally are not practicable in systems with delta or ungroundedwye primary windings because overvoltages above 1.18: Single-Line Diagram of a Portion of a UD System. assume the single-pole switches are open at all four locations shown in Figure 6. fused or solid disconnects. Implementation of these switching procedures requires that switching devices—such as loadbreak elbow connectors. . either of the following two switching procedures could be used. lower kVA grounded-wye transformers at their terminals.25 pu when the transformers have groundedwye primary windings and a five-legged core. Close the switches at location SW1 to energize cable section 1 (SEC 1). This represents the situation in which the transformer is loop feed with load-break elbow connectors.2 7 4 – Se c t io n 6 6 long lengths of cable and connected transformers that can be switched with single-pole switches. by factors of approximately four and nine. or internal under-oil switches—are located at the transformer primary terminals. especially when restoring service during and after severe storms. do the following: 1.and 34. cable would be connected to the de-energized primary terminals of the transformer. but does not have a field-operable disconnect between the loop-feed bus of the transformer and the primary winding.5 pu overvoltages may occur when switching the lower loss. DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM OPERATION (SWITCHING PROCEDURES) With existing distribution systems. does not result in objectionable overvoltages. assume the single-pole switches at locations SW1. Close the switches at location SW3 to energize cable section 2 (SEC 2) up to the normally open point.18. To recap the switching procedures for limiting overvoltages during single-pole switching. But at the 24.5-kV systems if it is recognized that 1.25 pu. without connected cable. consider a system represented by Figure 6. grounded-wye primary transformers are much shorter.and 34. Single-Pole Switching Devices SW1 SEC 1 SW2 SW3 SEC 2 N. 3. SW2. and SW3 are open but the switches are closed at location SW4. Close the switches at location SW2 to energize the transformer. implementing these procedures in the field may be difficult. respectively. They can also be used in 24. and overvoltages could occur for single-pole switching at location SW2. Assuming that energizing cable section 1 (SEC 1) and the transformer with single-pole switches at location SW1 produces voltages above 1. switching procedures can be developed that limit overvoltages during single-pole switching operations to 1.9.9. 2. Second. If the switches at SW3 were closed before the single-pole switches at SW2 were closed.18. They can be used in 15-kV and lower voltage systems having five legged-core transformers with grounded-wye primary windings because switching at the primary terminals.O.25 pu may occur for single-pole switching at the primary terminals of the transformer. the lengths of cable that can be switched with fivelegged core. SW4 Single-Pole Switches or Fused Disconnect Devices Five-Legged Core FIGURE 6. However. First.5-kV voltage levels. or internal loop-feed switches.

Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 7 5

This represents the situation in which the transformer is loop feed with internal single-pole switching devices for connecting the transformer primary windings to the internal loop-feed bus. To energize the transformer and cables, close the single-pole switches at locations SW1 and SW2. The order of closing is not significant from a ferroresonance standpoint because the switches at location SW4 are open. Then the transformer windings are energized by closing the singlepole switching devices at location SW4, either before or after the switches at location SW3 are closed to energize cable section 2 (SEC 2). In developing switching procedures to prevent or limit ferroresonant overvoltages, the cooperative should consider whether it matters if liquid-filled transformers are energized with switching devices at their primary terminals or at a remote location. that prevent overvoltages above 1.25 pu usually can be developed. Implementation of these procedures may be difficult under practical conditions. For the basic types of services supplied by three-phase transformers, or banks of singlephase transformers, the preferred winding connections in the UD system, from a ferroresonance standpoint, are defined below. Four-Wire Wye Services Figure 6.1 shows the two most common connections for supply of four-wire wye services. Delta/grounded-wye connections should be avoided in cable-fed transformers unless only three-pole switching devices are used. Grounded-wye/grounded-wye connections should be used in transformers supplying fourwire wye services in UD systems. Triplex construction of three-phase transformers, or use of three single-phase transformers, prevents ferroresonance and eliminates the possibility of tank heating that can occur with the five-legged core transformer. Triplex construction is recommended for three-phase units. Use of five-legged core, three-phase transformers with groundedwye primary windings usually prevents voltages above 1.25 pu for switching at the primary terminals and with reasonable lengths of cable connected to the primary terminals.

SELECTION OF DISTRIBUTION TRANSFORMER CONNECTIONS Transformer connections in UD systems affect the likelihood of ferroresonance during singlepole switching of cable circuits and connected transformers (or just one transformer). In general, delta and ungrounded-wye connected primary windings should not be used for cable-fed transformers in 15-, 25-, and 35-kV class UD systems, unless only three-pole switches are used. For transformers in UD sysFour-Wire and Three-Wire tems, grounded-wye primary Delta Services windings are preferred. With Figure 6.1 shows transformer Transformer triplex-core three-phase transwinding connections for supconnections in UD formers and banks of singleplying the 240/120-volt, fourphase transformers with wire and 240-volt, three-wire systems affect the grounded-wye primary winddelta services. Delta/delta, likelihood of ings, ferroresonance will not floating-wye/delta, and openferroresonance occur during single-pole delta/open-delta connections switching of cables and conshould be avoided if singleduring single-pole nected transformers. With the pole switching of cable circuit switching. five-legged core, voltages and connected transformers is above 1.25 pu will occur if contemplated. These conneccable lengths are too long, or tions are acceptable only if if switching is done at the prithree-pole switches are used mary terminals of the lower loss, lower kVA for all switching operations. 24.9- and 34.5-kV transformers. When the cable Open-wye/open-delta connections prevent lengths are greater than the length allowed to ferroresonant overvoltages during single-pole limit voltages to 1.25 pu, switching procedures switching of cable circuits and connected

2 7 6 – Se c t io n 6

Another option is to provide two separate transformer. However, these connections are not service voltages. The 240-volt, three-wire load is symmetrical and are a source of voltage unbalsupplied from a triplex-core ance. Intentional oversizing of grounded-wye/grounded-wye the transformers in this configtransformer with a secondary uration will minimize voltage Use grounded-wye rated 240Y/138 volts. The neuunbalance on the secondary primary windings tral point of the wye-connectside. As long as the conneced secondary windings may tions do not cause objectionand triplex cores be grounded or floating. The able voltage unbalance, and in three-phase 120/240-volt, single-phase the possibility of energizing load is supplied from a singleboth high-voltage terminals transformers to avoid phase transformer with its from the same primary phase ferroresonance. primary connected from phase is minimal, these are the recto neutral. The experience of ommended connection for the cooperative with the opencable-fed transformers. Otherwye/open-delta connection in overhead systems wise, delta/delta or floating-wye/delta conneccan serve as a benchmark in determining the tions must be used with appropriate installation acceptability of the connections for cable-fed of three-pole, gang-operated switches and opertransformers. ating procedures to prevent ferroresonance.

Summary and Recommendations

Ferroresonance in UD systems is a complex phenomenon. The probability of its occurring and the severity of the associated overvoltages are a function of many parameters. If the following recommendations are observed in the design and operation of the system and in the selection of transformer connections, problems caused by ferroresonance will be minimized. If only grounded-wye primary windings and triplex cores are used in three-phase transformers, ferroresonance during single phasing is virtually impossible. It is not necessary to develop special switching or operating procedures, use three-pole switches, or limit cable length as may be required with five-legged core transformers with groundedwye primary windings. Triplex construction of three-phase transformers with grounded-wye primary windings prevents tank heating. 1. For service to four-wire wye loads from 12.47-, 24.9-, and 34.5-kV UD systems, use grounded-wye/grounded-wye winding connections. If the three-phase, cable-fed transformer is constructed on a five-legged core, there are limits on the length of cable with a connected transformer that can be energized or de-energized with single-pole switches so

that the overvoltages are limited to 1.25 pu. Do not exceed these cable lengths. If the physical location of the equipment makes it impossible to limit the length of cable, develop switching procedures whereby the cable circuit can be energized or de-energized with the transformer(s) disconnected from the cable circuit. Switching at the primary terminals of the lower loss, lower kVA grounded-wye primary five-legged core transformers in 24.9- and 34.5-kV systems may produce voltages above 1.25 pu. If the three-phase transformer has triplex construction, there are no limits on cable length during the single-pole switching of the cable circuit and transformer with grounded-wye primary windings. Triplex core transformers will not experience tank heating as is possible with five-legged core transformers with grounded-wye primary windings. When purchasing three-phase transformers with grounded-wye/grounded-wye winding connections, always consider both triplex and five-legged core designs, especially in the lower kVA sizes. Always purchase triplex designs if their evaluated cost (includes first cost, cost of losses, etc.) is less

Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 7 7

than or equal to that of the five-legged core unit. Because the triplex designs simplify switching and operating procedures and eliminate the possibility of tank heating, these benefits should be evaluated in the purchasing decision. Installation of three single-phase transformers, from a ferroresonance and tankheating standpoint, offers the same advantages as do the triplex design transformers. 2. For service to three-wire ungrounded (delta) loads from the 12.47-, 24.9-, and 34.5-kV UD systems, use the grounded-wye/floating-wye winding connection. This connection may also be used to supply the corner-grounded delta secondary system by grounding one of the secondary phase conductors. If the threephase, cable-fed transformer is constructed on a five-legged core, there are limits on the length of cable with a connected transformer that can be energized or de-energized with single-pole switches so that the overvoltages are limited to 1.25 pu. Do not exceed these cable lengths. If the physical location of the equipment makes it impossible to limit the length of cable, develop switching procedures whereby the cable circuit can be energized or de-energized with the transformer(s) disconnected from the cable circuit. If the threephase cable-fed transformer has triplex construction, there are no limits on cable length during the single-pole switching of the cable circuit and connected transformer with grounded-wye primary winding. When purchasing three-phase transformers with grounded-wye/floating-wye winding connections, always consider both triplex and five-legged core designs, especially in the lower kVA sizes. Always purchase triplex designs if their evaluated cost (including first cost, cost of losses, etc.) is less than or equal to that of the five-legged core unit. Three-phase transformers for this application either should have the neutral of the primary windings connected to the transformer tank or else should have the primary neutral brought out through a separate insulated bushing. When the neutral of the highvoltage winding is brought out through an insulated bushing, the neutral should always be grounded before the transformer is energized. The neutral point of the low-voltage windings rated 480Y/277 volts, in either case, should be brought out through an insulated bushing so that the transformer can serve either a four-wire grounded wye secondary, a three-wire delta (ungrounded) secondary system, or a corner-grounded secondary system. When the transformer serves the ungrounded or corner-grounded systems, the secondary neutral bushing (terminal) should be insulated by the cooperative to avoid unintentional grounding. When the low-voltage windings are rated 240Y/138 volts to supply a 240-volt ungrounded or corner-grounded system, the neutral may or may not be brought out, depending on the preference of the user. However, if the secondary neutral is not brought out on an insulated bushing, it must be floated (isolated) within the tank. 3. For service to 240/120-volt four-wire delta loads in the 12.47-kV UD system employing single-pole switching of cable circuit and connected transformers, use open-wye/opendelta connections. An alternative is to provide two separate services. The 240-volt, three-wire service is supplied from a triplexcore transformer or three single-phase transformers with the primary and secondary windings connected in grounded wye. The secondary winding of the three-phase unit must be rated 240Y/138 volts. The singlephase 120/240-volt service is supplied from a single-phase transformer with its primary winding connected from phase to neutral. Some utilities discourage new applications for the 240/120-volt, four-wire delta services. Instead, they promote four-wire wye service at 208Y/120 volts. This type of service allows use of grounded-wye/grounded-wye connections with triplex construction. If only three-pole switching is used to energize or de-energize the cable circuit and connected transformers, delta, open-delta, or floating-wye connections may be used for the primary windings, provided three-pole switches are also installed at each transformer

2 7 8 – Se c t io n 6

to connect and disconnect the transformer from the cable. The advantage of the closeddelta connection is that the maximum possible voltage unbalance, under worst-case conditions, is lower than with the openwye/open-delta connections. 4. For service to 240/120-volt, four-wire delta loads in 24.9- and 34.5-kV systems, use open-wye/open-delta connections. An alternative is to provide two separate services as described in recommendation three, or else promote the 208Y/120-volt, four-wire wye service over the four-wire delta service with grounded-wye windings. If only three-pole switching is used to energize and de-energize the cable circuit and connected transformers, and only three-pole switches are used to connect the transformer to the cable circuit, delta, open-delta, or floating-wye connections may be used for the primary windings. 5. Consumer load connected to the cable-fed transformer should not be used or relied on to prevent ferroresonance during single-pole switching on the primary side of the distribution transformer. If the load is too small, it will not prevent overvoltages, yet may be damaged by the resultant overvoltages. With floating-wye/delta transformer connections, badly unbalanced secondary load will prevent ferroresonance but cause high overvoltages by a different mechanism during single phasing. 6. Delta or ungrounded-wye primary windings can be used with three-phase transformers or banks of single-phase transformers in 24.9- and 34.5-kV UD systems without the possibility of ferroresonance only if threepole switches are used to energize and deenergize cable circuits and their connected transformers and three-pole switches are used at the HV terminals to connect the transformer to the cable circuit. Single phasing, caused by conductor or jumper opening, may result in ferroresonance under light load conditions. Cable-fed transformers with delta or ungrounded-wye primary windings are not recommended for use in new UD systems. 7. Delta or ungrounded-wye primary winding connections should not be used with cablefed, three-phase transformers or banks of single-phase transformers in 12.47-, 24.9-, and 34.5-kV UD systems when single-pole switching of cable circuits and connected transformers will be performed. The only exception to this recommendation is if the transformer primary windings are connected ungrounded-wye and provisions are made at the transformer to temporarily ground the neutral during single-pole switching operations. 8. Delta or ungrounded-wye connected primary windings should not be used for three-phase transformers or banks of three single-phase transformers even when single-pole switching will be done only at the primary terminals of the transformer. The only exception to this recommendation is if the transformer primary windings are connected ungrounded-wye and provisions are made at the transformer to temporarily ground the neutral during single-pole switching operations.

Ferroreso n a n c e – 2 7 9

Anderson, P.H. Analysis of Faulted Power Systems. Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Press, 1982. Crann, L.B., and R.B. Flickinger. “Overvoltages on 14.4/24.9kV Rural Distribution Systems.” AIEE Transactions (Power Apparatus and Systems) 73, part III (October 1954): 1208–1212. DiPietro, J., and R.H. Hopkinson. “Ferroresonance on Underground Feeders Having Several Transformers.” Southeastern Electric Exchange Engineering and Operating Meeting, New Orleans, La., April 26–27, 1976. Feldman, J.M., and A.M. Hopkin. “A Simple Nonlinear Analysis of the Single-Phase Ferroresonant Circuit.” Paper C 74 233-3, IEEE PES Winter Meeting, New York, N.Y., January 27, 1974. Ferguson, J.S. “A Practical Look at Ferroresonance.” Missouri Valley Electric Association Engineering Conference, Kansas City, Mo., April 17–19, 1968. Gasal, J. “Prevent Overvoltage Failure of Arresters.” Electrical World (July 1986): 47. Germany, N., S. Mastero, and J. Vroman. “Review of Ferroresonance Phenomena in HighVoltage Power System and Presentation of a Voltage Transformer Model for Predetermining Them.” CIGRE Paper 33-18, August 21–29, 1974. Hendrickson, P.E., I.B. Johnson, and N.R. Schultz. “Abnormal Voltage Conditions Produced by Open Conductors on Three-Phase Circuits Using Shunt Capacitors.” AIEE Transactions 72, part III (1953): 1183–1193. Hopkinson, R.H. “Ferroresonance During SinglePhase Switching of Three-Phase Distribution Transformer Banks.” IEEE Transactions on Power Apparatus and Systems PAS84 (April 1965): 289–293, discussion June 1965, 514–517. Hopkinson, R.H. “Ferroresonant Overvoltage Control Based on TNA Tests on Three-Phase Delta-Wye Transformer Banks.” IEEE Transactions on Power Apparatus and Systems PAS86, no. 10 (October 1967): 1258–1265. Hopkinson, R.H. “Ferroresonant Overvoltage Control Based on TNA Tests on Three-Phase Wye-Delta Transformer Banks.” IEEE Transactions on Power Apparatus and Systems PAS87, no. 2 (February 1968): 352–361. Locke, P. “Check Your Ferroresonance Concepts at 34 kV.” Transmission and Distribution (April 1978): 3239. Millet, R.D., D.D. Mairs, and D.L. Stuehm. “The Assessment and Mitigation Study of Ferroresonance on Grounded-Wye/Grounded-Wye ThreePhase Pad-Mounted Transformers.” Final Report: NRECA Energy Research Division, January 1990. Pennsylvania Electric Company. “Field Investigation of Ferroresonance on 20/34.5-kV Distribution Three-Phase Transformer Banks.” PENELEC, October 14, 1964. Rudenberg, R. Transient Performance of Electric Power Systems. Cambridge, Mass.: The MIT Press, May 1970. Schultz, R.A. “Ferroresonance in Distribution Transformer Banks on 19.8/34.5 kV Systems.” Rocky Mountain Electric League Spring Conference, Boulder, Colo., April 21, 1964. Smith, D.R., S.R. Swanson, and J.D. Borst. “Overvoltages with Remotely Switched Cable-Fed Grounded Wye-Wye Transformers.” IEEE Transactions on Power Apparatus and Systems PAS94, no. 5 (September/October 1975): 1843–1853. Stoelting, H.O. “A Practical Approach to Ferroresonance as Established by Tests.” Pacific Coast Electric Association Engineering and Operating Meeting, San Francisco, Calif., March 4, 1966. Walling, R.A. “Ferroresonance in Today’s Distribution Systems.” Presentation to the Western Underground Committee, Palo Alto, Calif., May 2, 1991. Walling, R.A. “Ferroresonance Guidelines for Modern Transformer Applications.” Final Report to the Distribution Systems Testing, Application, and Research (DSTAR) Consortium, July 1992.

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Walling, R.A., K.D. Barker, T.M. Compton, and L.E. Zimmerman. “Ferroresonant Overvoltages in Grounded Wye-Wye Pad-Mounted Transformers with Low-Loss Silicon-Steel Cores.” Presentation at the IEEE 1992 Summer Power Meeting. Young, F.S., R.L. Schmid, and P.I. Fergestad. “A Laboratory Investigation of Ferroresonance in Cable-Connected Transformers.” IEEE Transactions on Power Apparatus and Systems PAS-87, no. 5 (May 1968): 1240–1248.

Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 8 1

In This Section: Special Note Introduction

Cathodic Protection Requirements

Special Note Introduction What to Protect Where to Protect Types of Cathodic Protection Systems Amount of Cathodic Protection

Cathodic Protection Design with Galvanic Anodes Cathodic Protection Installation and Follow-Up Calculation of Resistance to Ground Summary and Recommendations

With the 2006 transition to jacketed mediumvoltage distribution-class cables, cathodic protection is not generally needed in today’s applications. With the older BCN cables (now not RUS accepted), cathodic protection was a necessary

precaution to avoid corrosion on the exposed bare concentric neutrals in certain soil types. This section is being left in this manual as a historical reference for those situations in which BCN cables are still in operation.

Cathodic protection is an effective and economical means for avoiding underground corrosion in electrical grounding to ensure safe and reliable operation of the electric system. Cathodic protection is protection of the neutral, ground electrodes, and other metal in contact with soil through the use of sacrificial anodes or rectifiers and impressed-current anodes. Cathodic protection has become a necessity for electric utilities because of the broad shift to underground construction and the use of nonconducting materials. In the past, the electric neutral and ground wires were connected to buried steel piping, conduit, tanks, wells, and anchors at many locations. Copper grounds and copper wires in soil received cathodic protection at the expense of buried steel. The large extent

of buried steel, together with surface films on the copper, caused the resulting corrosion of steel to be so slow that it was generally ignored. Now, copper-jacketed ground rods and copper wires may be the only earth contact for safety and electrical protection. With no steel connected, the copper is vulnerable to corrosion because of variations in the soil and from ac voltages present on the neutral. Corrosion of copper in these circumstances can result in loss of electrical protection, property damage, and hazards to operating crews and the public. This section explains, step by step, how to design and install cathodic protection with sacrificial anodes, and how to recognize where such protection will be the most important.

2 8 2 – Se c t io n 7

What to Protect
THE ELECTRIC NEUTRAL AND GROUNDS The first requirement is to protect the electric neutral and grounds. The necessity for effective grounding and continuity of the neutral return conductor should be obvious. Cathodic protection is a cost-effective means for avoiding problems in these areas. OTHER BURIED, GROUNDED METAL Buried steel conduit, anchors, pipes, and well casings are subject to corrosion when they are connected to the common neutral, particularly when the grounding is with copper materials. Cathodic protection of the neutral and grounding system is needed to avoid or control such corrosion.

Where to Protect

Consider cathodic protection at the time of construction where any of the following apply: • In new residential subdivisions with nonmetallic sewer lines, water lines, gas lines, and copper-grounded electric facilities, where the only buried metal connected to the neutral is copper. Copper may corrode rapidly in these situations because of the mixing of soils during regrading and the absence of the cathodic protection usually provided by buried steel. • Along other routes with widely variable soil conditions that may result from differences in terrain, soil moisture, drainage, and the presence of contaminants such as ashes, coal, dumped refuse, or drainage from barnyards or irrigated fields. • At services from copper-grounded electric circuits where steel pipes, tanks, or well casings

are vulnerable to accelerated corrosion because of the effects of dissimilar metals. • At the ends of copper-grounded cable routes in very high-resistivity soils, where ac voltages on the neutral may cause accelerated corrosion of buried copper (Zastrow, 1981). • Near cathodically protected pipelines and in the vicinity of rectifiers that supply dc for cathodic protection; also, near dc-powered railways and mining operations. Control of corrosion from external dc sources may require special measures in addition to installation of cathodic protection (Zastrow, 1979). To understand underground corrosion and corrosion-control measures, one must recognize that the electric neutral and ground connections behave as a dc circuit and must be treated as such. The electric neutral, ground electrodes, and other buried metal components connected to them act as a huge galvanic cell. The more noble buried metal surfaces, usually copper, become cathodes and are protected against corrosion. The less noble metals, usually iron and steel, become anodes and are corroded (see Figure 7.1). The electric grounding system may be in an area of widely varying soil resistivity (see Figure 7.2). Shaded areas on the map represent locations of low-resistivity, corrosive soils. Metals in corrosive soil become anodes and corrode, whereas the metals in less-corrosive soil are protected against corrosion. See Section 5 for a detailed discussion of soil electrical resistivity. When both copper and steel are present in variable soils, as at a connection between an underground cable and pole line (see Figure 7.2), the steel anchor in corrosive soil becomes the anode and corrodes, whereas the copper in less corrosive soil is protected against corrosion. If

Pole Line

Electron Flow

Anchor (Anode)

Copper Grounds (Cathodes)

Copper Grounds (Cathodes)

Copper Grounds Steel Pipe (Anode)

Irrigation Well (Anode)

FIGURE 7.1: Dissimilar Metal Effects Between Buried Metals Connected to the Neutral of an Electric Distribution Line.

Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 8 3

Electron Flow Electron Flow B B B A

(A) Corrosive soils (B) Less corrosive soils

FIGURE 7.2: Electric System Map Shaded to Show Corrosive Soil Locations. only buried copper is present, as may be true with underground cables, the copper in corrosive soils sacrifices itself to protect the copper in less corrosive soils.

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF DC POTENTIALS Underground corrosion occurs because of differences between dc potentials of the buried metals, either because of dissimilar metals or because of differences in soil. Typical dc potentials of some common metals and of carbon are shown in Table 7.1. The higher (more negative) the dc potential, the more likely the metal is to corrode when connected to other buried metals. Potentials such as shown in Table 7.1 are measured with a high-resistance voltmeter and copper-copper sulfate half cell (see Figure 7.3). If two buried metals are connected, the one with a higher negative potential is corroded while the other is protected (see Figure 7.4). A single buried metal, such as copper, corrodes in varying soils as shown in Figure 7.5. SOIL RESISTIVITY Include soil resistivity measurements as part of a preconstruction survey along each proposed underground cable route. At the same time, record the locations of pipeline crossings and other possible dc sources that may cause cathodic protection interference. Soil resistivity is measured with a four-terminal ground test instrument, with four equally spaced probes placed in a straight line (see Figure 7.6). If measurements are made in the vicinity of a BCN cable or buried pipe, the probes should be off to one side and at right angles to the buried metal.

TABLE 7.1: Typical DC Potentials in Soil.
Material Zinc Iron Copper Carbon
* To a copper-copper sulfate half cell

Potential, Volts* -1.1 -0.6 to -0.7 0 to -0.1 +0.2

Detail of Half Cell To Voltmeter Copper Rod Voltmeter

Copper Sulfate Solution Excess Crystals Porous Plug

Half Cell

Soil resistivity measurements are essential for success in any corrosion control effort.


Soil Metal

FIGURE 7.3: Measurement of Potential to a Copper-Copper Sulfate Half Cell.

SOIL AND TERRAIN FEATURES The appearance of soil and the nature of the terrain often reveal locations of corrosive soils as well as soils not likely to be corrosive. Swamps,

A A = Distance between probes A A Cable FIGURE 7. if the meter reads R = 2. sometimes mottled with white. if A = 5. Well-drained areas and presence of carbonates (lime) usually indicate locations of no significant corrosion.4: Dissimilar Metal Effects Between Copper and Steel. and poorly drained areas indicate severely corrosive soils. ground rods. streams. In Figure 7. To show “conventional flow” (movement of positive charge).1: Measuring Earth Resistivity. multiply the meter reading by 20. For 5. is severely corrosive to both copper and steel. soil resistivity is 24 ohm-m. represent corrosive soils. • Blue or gray clay.6. which helps form passive protective films on iron or steel. CORROSION EXPERIENCE Make use of maintenance and replacement records and recollections of underground crews to identify the areas of most probable corrosion.4-foot spacing.06V Electron Flow EXAMPLE 7. Soil Ions Anodic (Corroding) Area Electron Flow Ions Cathodic (Protected) Area Arrows represent the flow of electrons in connecting wires and movement of positive ions in the soil. For 10.6: Measurement of Earth Resistivity with a Four-Terminal Ground Tester.5: Dissimilar Soil Effects on Buried Copper Wires. ground wires. P1 C1 P2 C2 Recollections of underground crews about soil types may be valuable. Additional information about soil resistivity measurements and grounding is given in Section 5 of this manual.2 feet. multiply the meter reading by 10 to find earth resistivity in ohm-m. • White alkali on the surface in dry areas.2 8 4 – Se c t io n 7 7 –0. FIGURE 7. These may be good locations for sacrificial anodes.4 ohms. indicating the presence of oxygen. . This usually dense clay is deficient in oxygen and associated with poorly drained soils. and anchor assemblies) as well as their condition at the time of observed deterioration or failure. reverse the arrows that represent electron flow. Red signifies the presence of iron oxide. Note the locations and ages of components (cable neutrals.05V –0. • Red clay is only mildly corrosive to buried steel. BareNeutral Cable Soil C o p p e r Soil I r o n + Ions Copper Iron Protected Corroding FIGURE 7.2-foot spacing. The appearance of soils at cable depth may be significant for the following reasons. or low locations including marshes where drainage is poor.

Note: When they are connected together. depending on design and the physical location of the anode or anode bed. and wells in oil fields. Use of these units should be limited at first in order to gain experience. The difference is due to films that usually form on cathodic surfaces. and zinc are 0. Special attention must be given to the location of anodes and adjustment of the rectifiers to avoid serious damage to the grounding system or other nearby facilities. the resulting potential is -0. The balance of this section will be addressed to cathodic protection by means of sacrificial anodes. Rectifier systems are more exacting in their requirements for design and regular attention to maintenance.3 volt.1). These rectifier systems should be designed and installed by individuals of proven competence who have experience with such installations. The potentials of the individual metals in soil for copper. They have been suggested for retrofitting along existing BCN underground cables. along with impressedcurrent anodes. respectively (see Table 7.1V –0. A rectifier system may either prevent or cause corrosion problems. Results have been mixed in terms of reliability and service life. The potential of the copper-iron-zinc combination is -0. Adjustable rectifiers. the potential that results is more negative than the average of the individual metal potentials. iron. For the copper-iron couple. and -1. They may be the most economical means for protecting grounding systems at generating stations. They are usually installed at pad-mounted equipment where the anodes can be buried at minimum cost with a minimum of digging. storage tanks. RECTIFIER SYSTEMS Rectifier systems are used where there is a need for higher output voltages and/or currents than galvanic anodes can provide. .4).4V Electrons –1.6. –0. and major industrial facilities. The potentials in Figure 7. -0. a zinc anode can be added to provide protection (see Figure 7. Rectifiers use an ac source to apply a negative potential to the protected structure and return the dc to earth by means of one or more impressed-current anodes. Sacrificial anodes make use of dissimilar metal effects to protect buried metals against corrosion.8V Electron Flow + Ions Copper Iron (Protected) (Corroding) Zinc Copper (Protected) Positive Ions Iron Zinc (Corroding) FIGURE 7. are used for protecting large underground structures such as pipelines. SACRIFICIAL ANODE SYSTEMS Sacrificial anodes are widely used for cathodic protection on electric distribution facilities for reasons of cost and the minimum maintenance required.4 instead of -0. which have the effect of reducing the amount of current required for cathodic protection. substations.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 8 5 7 Types of Cathodic Protection Systems Cathodic protection may be provided by sacrificial anodes of magnesium or zinc. particularly in soils with very high resistivities.1 volts. even though the average of the three is -0.7).7 show the effect of surface films. Small constant-current rectifier units are used to provide more current output than is available from sacrificial anodes.57 volt. or by rectifiers and impressed-current anodes. if steel is corroding because of a connection to copper (see Figure 7.7: Potentials of a Copper-Steel Couple Before and After Connecting a Zinc Anode. For example.8 volt.

interpreted in light of “as found” dc potentials.6 volt.2: Suggested DC Potentials for Cathodic Protection. Use the same values as for cables with insulating jackets. the dc potentials are strongly influenced by “as-found” conditions. after a mile or so. improperly located anodes. and these specifications. More negative potentials provide a greater margin of protection. pipes. try. Experience in the cooperative’s service area is the best guide for deciding on potentials that are effective yet practical. tanks.85 -0. steel anchor assemblies and ground rods are lasting more than 25 years at potentials such as -0.1 to -0.7 -0. cathodic protection is designed to maintain dc neutral potentials equal to or more negative than those shown in Table 7.7 -0. as a minimum. Anchor assemblies bonded to pole line neutrals would not have experienced difficulty before underground construction. Buried copper is generally free of corrosion at potentials of -0. pipes. the desired potentials will be achieved. the owner should install anodes at locations of grounds along the new cable so that. as an alternative. and conduit. the design should avoid any objectionable flow of dc in service neutrals. At locations of steel wells. At connections to extensive copper-grounded facilities. In most soils.85 -0.2. With these potentials as a guide.85 volt or more negative. but may corrode at more negative potentials in the presence of ac voltages (Zastrow. The potentials in Table 7. The potential selected for providing protection is important. Cathodic protection designs.85 -0. TABLE 7. Steel or iron in soil is usually regarded as protected against corrosion at potentials of -0. Even so.* Conditions Along jacketed cables*** In noncorrosive soils In corrosive soil areas At locations of grounded steel wells. however. or in which significant corrosion of buried copper has been experienced. tanks.2. as the cost of cathodic protection increases directly with the shift in dc potential to be achieved. No underground corrosion of copper would have been noticed before the installation of BCN underground cables. are only approximate because of wide variations in soil properties. ** Volts to a copper-copper sulfate half cell. variable effects of polarization films. Examples drawn from RUS experience are given in Table 7. should be helpful for deciding on the ones to be used for cathodic protection design. To achieve a more negative cable neutral potential at such locations.5 to -0. and wells connected to a copper-grounded neutral lasted for 20 years or more without significant losses resulting from underground corrosion.6 -0. the owner may need to provide cathodic protection for the “foreign” grounding system.3 -0. Noncorrosive soils are defined as those in which steel ground rods and steel anchor assemblies. Or. procedures such as these are necessary to avoid the high cost of ineffective installations and wasted.85 Potential (volts dc)** * From long-term personal experience on electric systems financed by RUS. 1981). Corrosive soils are those in which significant numbers of anchor rods bonded to a copper grounded neutral failed within 15 years after installation.4 -0.25 volt. and uncertainties about the characteristics and extent of buried metal structures connected to the neutral. to achieve those indicated for BCN cables. ***There is a lack of experience with protection of cables with semiconducting jackets. if these levels are practical.4 to -0. Experience in the service area.2 8 6 – Se c t io n 7 7 Amount of Cathodic Protection The cathodic protection should cause enough current flow to make the dc neutral potential sufficiently negative to prevent corrosion.2 are intended to provide a starting point until experience is gained in selecting potentials to provide the desired degree of protection at an acceptable cost. less negative potentials increase the probability of underground corrosion problems. otherwise. tanks. with first failures after 20 years or more. . conduit At cable terminal poles In noncorrosive soils In corrosive soil areas At connections to extensive copper-grounded facilities -0. conduit Along BCN cables In noncorrosive soils In corrosive soil areas At locations of grounded steel wells.

STEP 4: Select the anode types. (See Figures 7. Note: There is a great difference between the value of resistance or conductance to ground per unit length (per mile or kft) of neutral and the value for the complete neutral. and the neutral conductor and ground wires provide the connections to the load. STEP 1: Calculate the Neutral Resistance and Conductance to Ground The discussions that follow refer to conductance (the reciprocal of resistance) instead of resistance to avoid the cumbersome formulas that are necessary for finding the equivalent of resistances in parallel. JACKETED CABLES AND OVERHEAD POLE LINES A jacketed underground cable. STEP 2: Decide on the shift in dc neutral potential that will be necessary for adequate control of corrosion. is similar to a pole line with regard to grounding and cathodic protection design. pipes. In both. STEP 3: Calculate the anode output current required. Additional grounding is provided by other buried metal (conduit. the dc potential the anode would assume if not connected to anything else En = DC neutral potential Rn = Resistance-to-earth of the neutral and grounds Ra = Anode resistance Rw = Resistance of the anode lead FIGURE 7. These steps will now be described in detail for Jacketed Cables and Overhead Pole Lines. . and pole anchor assemblies) connected to the common neutral and in contact with the soil. ground connections (metals buried in soil) are the load. STEP 5: Decide on approximate locations for anodes along the cable. and Connections to Other Facilities—only addi- tional factors to be considered are included.4.8). and 7. ground. Cathodic protection design requires at least five steps: STEP 1: Calculate the neutral resistance to Cables in Conduit. most of the grounding is by means of driven ground rods along the line and on consumers’ premises. wells. For the following other types of situations— Protection of Bare Concentric Neutral Cables. 7.8: Equivalent Circuit for a Galvanic Anode Connected to the Electric Neutral.5. The anode is the voltage source. Large Power Users. The current return path is through the soil.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 8 7 7 Cathodic Protection Design with Galvanic Anodes A cathodic protection system is actually a dc circuit (see Figure 7. sizes. and numbers. Rw Ea En Ra Rn Ea = Open circuit anode potential.7.) The object of cathodic protection is to shift the dc potential of the neutral to a sufficiently negative value to control or stop corrosion. with an insulating jacket over the neutral wires. Conductances of individual grounds in parallel can be combined by simple addition or multiplication. which usually has a resistance to ground of a fraction of one ohm. Cables with Conducting (Semicon) Jackets. tanks.

71 0.1556 32.00133 1. (Note that this calculation is not precise!) If pole line anchors are included.005 = 0. indicate separately the numbers of ground rods in the lower or higher resistivity areas.129 = 0.675 siemens For 3/4-in. assume that each is equivalent to half a ground rod. 5/8-in. rods = 0.2074 6. × 8-ft rods.5 0. and two-thirds are in highresistivity soils.129 siemens In 500 ohm-m soil. rods = 0. 5 Soil Resistivity (ohm-m*) 10 15 20 100 500 (Resistance.697 siemens .258 5. Resistance Conductance 3/4 in.1671 7.00100 * For resistivity in ohm-cm.6 0. 500 ohm-m and higher. and • If grounding is with 3/4-in.5168 3.981 0. Resistance Conductance 1.6223 3.14 0.1291 38. rods = 0.00623 803.00501 997.4 0.7 0.3) is as follows: In 20 ohm-m soil. x 8 ft. ohms. Assume that this is an underground cable with an insulating jacket over the neutral wires.00517 967.0311 160.427 0.607 0. Calculate the conductance to ground per mile of cable: • If grounding is with 5/8-in.125 = 0. rods.001245 1. 15 driven grounds per mile.807 3.743 0. 5/8-in. and conductance. TABLE 7. rods.625 siemens 10 rods in 500 ohm-m soil: 10 × 0. x 8 ft. on average.645 siemens 10 rods in 500 ohm-m soil: 10 × 0. 5 rods in 20 ohm-m soil: 5 × 0. Equations for calculating the values given in Table 7. There are. Resistance Conductance 3/4 in.2506 5.000 feet (kft) along the line and on consumers’ premises.1722 7.5013 3. × 8-ft rods. One-third of them are in soils with resistivities of approximately 20 ohm-m. Estimate the number of ground rods per 1.3.0052 = 0. The conductance per eight-foot ground rod (Table 7.1253 39.125 siemens 3/4-in.3: Calculated Resistance and Conductance to Ground of Individual Ground Rods as Related to Soil Resistivity. rods = 0.0052 siemens Conductance to ground per mile of cable neutral: For 5/8-in.6 0.000 Feet of Cable.214 0.500 Ground Rod Size 5/8 in. multiply by 100.821 0. If soil resistivities vary substantially.052 siemens Sum: 0.0258 193.2 8 8 – Se c t io n 7 7 EXAMPLE 7.9 0.0251 199.3111 4. Calculation of Resistance to Ground.90 0. Determine the conductivity to ground from the numbers of driven grounds and the information in Table 7.936 0.990 0.871 0.0050 siemens 3/4-in.3 are explained later in the subsection. including those on consumers’ premises.995 0. 5 rods in 20 ohm-m soil: 5 × 0. x 10 ft. siemens) 2.2: Calculating the Neutral Conductance to Ground Per 1.985 0.050 siemens Sum: 0.

697 = 0. in siemens. and installed cost. anode weight and the backfill package size. With copper-jacketed ground rods.3: Determining Required Shift in Potential. the success or failure—of the cathodic protection installation.4: Potentials to a Copper-Copper Sulfate Half Cell.7 volt and the potential the neutral would have without cathodic protection. The potential of a neutral without cathodic protection is determined by ground rods and other buried.405 A (405 milliamperes [mA]) per mile With steel ground rods. sizes. Buried Metal or Material Zinc or new galvanized steel Old steel or iron Copper Carbon (in insulation shield or jacket) Typical DC Potential (volts) –1. as follows: • Column (a).0 ampere year 32-lb. STEP 4: Select Anode Types. Potentials that are likely. and Numbers Decide on the anode types and sizes needed.0 ampere years 48.5 are based on ampere years’ output of magnesium and zinc anodes as follows: Magnesium anodes: EXAMPLE 7. See Example 7. The selections will depend on soil resistivities at anode locations and on the anode characteristics that determine output. size. The estimated lives in Table 7. TABLE 7. that the selected neutral potential is -0. to minimize probable corrosion of buried steel connected to the neutrals along the cable route. The selections of anodes and their locations are likely to determine the effectiveness—and indeed.1 +0. The shift in potential required is the difference between -0. STEP 3: Calculate the Anode Output Current Required Calculate the anode output current required from Ohm’s law. Table 7. Assume. to ground. connected metals.4 ampere years . I = 0. service life. for calculating resistance. 2. 3. I = V × G.0697 A (70 mA) per mile 17. I = 0. for this example. size.2 The shift in neutral potential needed to achieve a neutral potential of –0. with no cathodic protection. the current output and estimated life when protecting the neutral at each of four potentials shown.6 volt if grounding is with steel disregarding the short-term effects of galvanizing (Table 7.and 20-lb.1 × 0. select the neutral potential needed for adequate protection (Table 7. 1. are -0. 1.6 volt for copper. • Column (d).1 or 7.0 ampere years Zinc anodes: 30-lb.1 volt for steel and –0.6 0 to –0.7 volt is –0.4). anode resistance in soil with the resistivity shown in column (b). • Column (c). See Example 7. size.6 × 0. 2. The selection will usually be a compromise between an “ideal” level of protection desired and cost of the cathodic protection.7 volt. where V is the shift in potential to be achieved and G is the neutral conductance (reciprocal of resistance).4.and 50-lb. Sizes.5 to –0.5 provides information about standard sizes and types of anodes.4: Calculating Required Anode Output Current.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 8 9 7 STEP 2: Determine the Shift in Potential Required To determine the dc shift in neutral potential to be achieved by cathodic protection.675 = 0.2 ampere years 60-lb. The driving potential for each output calculation is equal to the solution potential indicated for each anode material less the structure potential. EXAMPLE 7.1 volt if all grounding is with copper and -0.1 –0.2). sizes.3.

) High-Potential Magnesium (Solution Potential = 1.5 20 50 100 50 22 × 10 20 50 9 23 46 7.6 140 93 57 275 140 93 8. multiply by 100.) Package Size (in.10V) 30 66 × 6 20 30 50 60 66 × 6 10 20 30 ! = Not meaningful.2 18 75 37 18 46 23 9 199 79 13 32 ! 22 44 ! 15 38 65 32 16 40 20 8 171 68 15 23 ! 25 ! ! 18 44 54 26 13 33 17 7 143 57 19 38 ! 30 ! ! 21 ! 46 23 11 28 14 6 122 49 22 43 ! 36 ! ! 25 ! Zinc (Solution Potential = –1.7 –0.7 19 38 7.7 8. * At anode depth.7 17 26 105 70 43 207 105 70 11 29 28 12 23 34 70 47 29 138 70 47 17 26 41 17 34 ! 44 29 18 86 44 20 27 41 ! 28 ! ! .5 13 21 8.85 (ohm-m**) (ohms) (mA) (yrs) (mA) (yrs) (mA) (yrs) (mA) (yrs) (b)* Standard Magnesium (Solution Potential = –1.1 18 139 54 27 162 66 33 176 69 7 19 37 12 30 60 17 43 117 46 23 136 55 28 147 58 9 22 ! 15 36 ! 20 ! 94 37 18 110 45 22 120 47 11 28 ! 18 ! ! 25 ! 77 30 15 91 37 18 99 39 13 33 ! 22 ! ! 31 ! (a) Anode Nominal Weight (lb.7 8.5 –0.6 14 2.9 5.55V) 17 22 × 7 2 50 100 32 26 × 8. Horizontal Anodes at 6-Foot Depth (c) (d) Current Output and Estimated Life for Structure Potential (volts) Soil Resistivity Anode Resistance –0. and Estimated Life. exceeds 45 years.5: Sacrificial Anode Resistance. 5. Output Current.2 9 0 – Se c t io n 7 7 TABLE 7.73V) 17 38 × 6 50 100 200 20 64 × 5 100 200 500 48 34 × 8 20 50 19 39 78 31 62 154 7. ** To express in ohm-cm.3 –0.

21 years Zinc.61 2. see information later in this section.00 (siemens per 1. Give special attention to locations where the newly installed cable is connected to other facilities (particularly copper-grounded stations). or of the group of cables in a multiphase circuit.. the 70 mA required can be provided with one zinc anode per mile..7-volt structure potential. The effective diameter in Table 7. an estimate should be made of an equivalent circle that would enclose the conductor cross sections.500 Effective Diameter (inches) 2.* Soil Resistivity (ohm-m) 5 10 25 50 100 150 500 1. in the columns for a 0. and loads such as irrigation wells with unusual amounts of grounded metal surrounded by irrigated soil areas.5. the anode life will exceed 45 years.271 0.30 1. do the following: In 500 ohm-m soil: High-potential magnesium. using soil resistivity profiles obtained during preconstruction surveys. Additional grounding is by means of driven ground rods and by other buried metal connected to the neutral and ground wires. Particularly.500 7.6 shows calculated conductances to ground of BCN neutrals with effective diameters as indicated. PROTECTION OF BARE CONCENTRIC NEUTRAL CABLES Most of the grounding of BCN cable is by direct contact with the concentric neutral wires.63 1. 70 mA.02 2.26 0.6. the 405 mA required for each mile can be provided with four 32-lb. 7 mA. but use discretion regarding maximum distances between anodes. or six zinc anodes (420 mA). Neutral Conductance to Ground Table 7. Conductance to Ground of BCNs with Effective Diameters as Indicated. Obtain the best soil resistivity data at cable depth that time and resources allow.877 0. so values in soils with other resistivities can be determined without the need for detailed calculations. and Numbers.6.32 13. How accurate can the cooperative afford to be? Do the following: 1. and estimated lives: In 20 ohm-m soil: Standard magnesium.018 * For method of calculating. TABLE 7.084 0.088 0.51 1. old BCN cables. 110 mA. The rate of progress in field surveys is slow at first but will increase with experience.35 0.090 0.240 0. if they can be located in 20 ohm-m soil. or three 48-lb. soil appearance.20 0.81 2.40 1.018 1. The conductances are inversely proportional to soil resistivity. 48-lb.5: Selecting Anode Types. seasonal temperature variations. as is shown in Table 7. Learn to identify the extremes from the nature of terrain. Soil resistivity is the most important variable of all. calculated current outputs. 20-lb.07 13.15 0.00 27.080 0.41 2. find the approximate boundaries of lowest and highest resistivity areas if variations are in the range of five to one or greater.6 is the diameter of the individual cable. See Table 7.51 4.26 2.768 0. and also the kinds of anodes.000 feet of cable) 24.54 5. high-potential magnesium anodes (429 mA). If cables are in a flat or irregular configuration.71 1.016 25. For steel-grounded cable. 32-lb.263 0. 17 years Zinc.03 11.902 0.230 0..017 26. Sizes. may show that little cathodic protection is needed for cables with insulating jackets and galvanized steel ground rods.16 5. 2. 34 years soil resistivity locations available. and changes in soil moisture.12 12.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 9 1 7 EXAMPLE 7. 30-lb.00 23. STEP 5: Decide on Approximate Anode Locations Along the Route Decide on approximate anode locations along the route.015 12. 143 mA.56 5. 70 mA. For copper-grounded cable.32 0.801 0. installed in 20 ohm-m soil. 18 years High-potential magnesium. Prior experience with steel-grounded pole lines.837 0. to find the anodes that might be selected. Take maximum advantage of the lowest .00 4.251 0. standard magnesium anodes (440 mA).00 8. Yet soil resistivity data are subject to considerable error because of practical limitations of field surveys. To calculate the neutral conductance to ground if there are wide variations in soil resistivity. if available.077 0..01 4.03 12. 60-lb.. and vegetation.

5.697 siemens 5 × 0. In 20 ohm-m soil. The amount of additional cathodic Conductance to ground of driven rods along the cable. In 20 ohm-m soil.93 siemens a. In 500 ohm-m soil. particularly where grounding is mainly by means of copper in contact with the soil.81 siemens Total per mile = 10. b.76 = 10.1 or 7. the shift in potential needed is -0. A sacrificial anode system is largely self-adjusting. 5/8 in.23 siemens per kft. 3. conductance to ground of one-inch-diameter cable neutrals in 20 ohm-m soil is 5.000 ohm-m (500 ohm-m average).3 volts to a copper-copper sulfate half cell to protect copper concentric neutral wires and grounds.2 9 2 – Se c t io n 7 7 EXAMPLE 7. The neutral conductance to ground per mile of cable is as follows: In 20 ohm-m soil. EXAMPLE 7. in terms of potential shift achieved. 3/4 in. See Example 7. Concerning “accuracy.5 volts to a copper-copper sulfate half cell.52 = 0.7: Determining Required Shift in Neutral Potential.23 × 3.2 or -0.0052 = 0.1 I=E×G where: I = Current.75 (half of 11. For this example. Additional cathodic projection capacity will be needed to accommodate the conductivity effect of the jacket. The selected potential might be -0.52 kft in the 400 to 1.8.0052 = 0. Calculate the conductance separately for cables in each resistivity range and add them together to obtain the total.645 siemens 10 × 0. From Table 7. Recognize as normal the wide seasonal variations in soil resistivity that follow variations in temperature and soil moisture.675 siemens Note that more than 90 percent of the conductance to ground—and. For steel rods. in amperes E = DC potential shift. Anode Output Current and Anodes Required The required anode output current per mile of cable. with anode outputs and current requirements going up and down together.4 volts for copper and zero for steel rods. based on 15 per mile. therefore. Following the above proportions. most of the need for cathodic protection—is in the 20 ohm-m soil.76 kft) of its length in 20 ohm-m soils and 3.51) siemens per kft. to achieve the desired potentials.125 = 0. and for cables in 500 ohm-m soil.129 = 0.85 volts in corrosive soils) to protect anchor rods and other buried steel connected to the neutral. by a considerable margin. Estimate the proportion of cable in each resistivity range as suggested in Example 7.1 volts is the probable potential of copper without cathodic protection (Table 7. in siemens . or it might be -0.2. Assume a single-phase one-inch-diameter cable installed with one-third of its length in soils with resistivities on the order of 20 ohm-m and two-thirds of its length in soil with resistivities of 400 to 1. select the potential that should be achieved by cathodic protection. Locate anodes of suitable size and type in the lowest resistivity soil locations available at reasonable intervals and in numbers sufficient to provide the total output needed. Equation 7.6.” recognize that results from a first installation are likely to miss the design objective.760 ft (1. × 8 ft. in volts G = Conductance. 5 × 0.75 × 1.050 siemens Sum = 0. In 500 ohm-m soil. The level of protection selected makes a great difference in the cost of cathodic protection.4). Reliability of design estimates will improve with experience. In 500 ohm-m soil. 0.1. Shift in Neutral Potential Required From Table 7. a mile of BCN cable will have 1.6. × 8 ft. CABLES WITH CONDUCTING (SEMICON) JACKETS Cables with a conducting (semiconducting) jacket over the concentric neutral wires provide conductivity to surrounding earth through the jacket in addition to that provided by the metallic grounds.6: Estimating Neutral Conductance to Ground of BCN Cable. is given by Equation 7.12 siemens 0.000 ohm-m soils. As -0.052 siemens Sum = 0. assume that the selected potential is -0. 4.625 siemens 10 × 0.7 volts (or even -0. is as follows: For copper rods.

5 volt structure potential. tends to sacrifice itself to protect bare copper neutral wires inside. LARGE POWER USERS The grounds at a large power load. a length of zinc ribbon anode should be pulled in with the cables and the core wire connected to the cable neutrals at a splice at one or both ends. in the columns for a –0.5 volts for the BCN wires and zero for steel ground rods: Output current required: I = 10. the potential shift required is –0. determine the anode output current and anodes required. standard magnesium (4.61 siemens Output current required for –0.410 mA).93 × 0. Conduit made of nonconducting material presents an insulating barrier around the cable so that cathodic protection from sources outside cannot reach the cables inside.644 mA) per mile With steel ground rods. However.617 mA).. some protection to the consumerowned grounds. zinc (4.. Steel conduit. if the cooperative still uses BCN cables. the potential shift required is –0. may present a resistance to ground that is low compared with that of the electric neutral at that location. In 500 ohm-m soil: If all anodes can be installed in 20 ohm-m soil. For 4.372 A (4. protection capacity will be dependent on the volume resistivity of the jacket and the neutral configuration.6 Ground rods = 0.4 = 4.6 and 7.704 mA). It also may depend on the presence of ac voltages (Zastrow. standard magnesium (4.446 mA).410 mA). the life of the anode will exceed 45 years. 20-lb. into a humid atmosphere and possible water and then back into soil. and estimated lives: In 20 ohm-m soil: Standard magnesium. Two alternative approaches to consider are as follows: 1. such as an industrial grounding system or a center-pivot irrigation well. Or install cathodic protection for the existing station or other facility at the time the new cable is installed. (See information later in this section. nonmetallic conduit. bring the neutral to the desired potential. going from soil to mixed air and soil.93 siemens. or 44 of 60-lb. high-potential magnesium (4. 23 years High-potential magnesium.. With copper-jacketed ground rods. Such a ground has a dc potential that is not readily changed unless the owner installs cathodic protection in addition to that along the electric line. zinc (4. high-potential magnesium (4. 18 years Zinc.4 = 4. 2. on the other hand. Using the assumptions of Examples 7.7. 48-lb. 50-lb. CONNECTIONS TO OTHER FACILITIES Install additional cathodic protection where a new cable is connected to an existing BCN cable or a copper-grounded substation.) BCN cables must not be installed in direct-buried.372 mA per mile: 30 per mile of 50-lb.372 mA) per mile See Table 7. the numbers needed are as follows: For 4. The anodes provide a zone of protection for individual grounds and anchor assemblies.8: Determining Output Current and Anodes Required. calculated current outputs. as in Example 7. 171 mA.644 A (4. Conductance to ground: BCN wires = 10. 60-lb. 147 mA.68 siemens Sum = 11.4 volts for BCN wires and the ground rods. 20 years High-potential magnesium. . For new construction.620 mA).644 mA per mile: 32 per mile of 50-lb. 1981). and.61 × 0.. or 27 of 48-lb. Cables in conduit are much more vulnerable to underground corrosion than are cables in soil.4 volt shift: I = 11. to find the anodes that might be selected. Variations in the environment are extreme.5. cables with insulating jackets should be installed inside conduit. 105 mA. CABLES IN CONDUIT Virtually all cooperatives now use jacketed cable. or 42 of 60-lb. Install additional anodes at grounding locations nearby. or 26 of 48-lb.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 9 3 7 EXAMPLE 7. Follow procedures as for large power loads. 8 mA. If BCN cables must be inside nonmetallic conduit. Encourage the owner to install cathodic protection. over a distance along the line.

sults. This adjustment. After cathodic protection locations are determined along a particular route. determining the long-term performust continue relative to positioning the camance of the cathodic protection requires a thodic protection with respect to the protected means to monitor the performance. the protection equally along the position of cathodic protection route without regard to soil is a compromise between Consider soil conditions. In addicondition. Because above-ground connections can be completed more easily at In either case. equipment locations. Particular attention should be paid to the following: • Where the anodes are installed along the route. and so protection installed at equal expense to trench in cathodic on when spacing distances along the route is protection conductors have to wasteful and expensive and be considered. equipment (such as cable) and how it is installed. of course. Consetected equipment. As a pracequipment is corroding at a particular locatical matter. • Banking Anodes. the protection level is reduced and the existing easements and expense • Known Corrosion Locations. and • How the cathodic protection is connected to the equipment. Consequently. • Existing Equipment. Cathodic proanodes far from the cable will tection should be adjusted in protect the greatest length of accordance with the following (in priority order): cable. After the preliminary cathodic protection reAs discussed in the cathodic protection design quirements have been determined and the apsubsection. A final adjustment may be made to the cathodic protection design to locate the greatest amount of cathodic protection at those locations that meet the above criteria. it is a good assumption that the cathodic protection will corrode (i. as discussed in the previous subsection. As discussed in the previous gured holes with a shallow trench to the prosubsection. If the existing may not permit installation of cathodic protection a greater distance away from the cable. On the other hand. installing best protection. the cathodic protection output is greater in lower soil resistivity areas. or horizontally in a trench. the anode output is dependent on propriate spacing calculated. will be wasted effort and expense without the same diligent effort in the actual installation of the cathodic protection. • How the cathodic protection should be installed. the practical asthe soil resistivity (the resistance between the pects of locating this cathodic protection come anode and protected equipment) and the anode into play. protect) at the 10 to 50 feet from the protected equipment with 25 feet as a practical compromise (see Figure 7. the same effort In addition. Anodes can be installed either vertically in au• Soil Resistivity. Cathodic concerning easements and the locations. cathodic protection should be located tion. Spacing the cathodic lead length. Either method will provide similar protection requently. the cathodic protection should be further adjusted to those locations as long as they are also near existing corrosion areas and/or lower soil resistivity areas.e. • The location of the individual cathodic protection installations relative to the protected equipment. reasonable effort should be made to locate the cathodic protection in these areas.2 9 4 – Se c t io n 7 7 Cathodic Protection Installation and Follow-Up Making a diligent effort at cathodic protection design. same location. practical considerations avoided at all costs. The method used is generally dependent on the equipment available and personal preference. existing equipment these two elements.. the anode should be installed . needs to be tempered by the fact that better overall protection may be provided by cathodic protection distributed along the route rather than lumped together at one or more locations. and so on should be tion.9). existing equipment. will generally not provide the On the one hand. cathodic protection.

Anode Connector. • In horizontal installations. Doing so will reduce the possibility of the anode corrosion disconnecting itself. A disconnection may render the anode useless. Test stations should be installed to provide a representative sample of the cathodic protection. it will be necessary to determine whether the cathodic protection is still operating and providing the necessary protection levels. This is based on the assumption that whatever happens at each location is similar. test stations adjacent to or inside existing equipment are preferred. Test Station Connector. Determination of continuing anode effectiveness is facilitated by the installation of test stations along the route. Hose Clamp Hose ClampType Connector Anode Lead Neoprene Cushion Concentric Neutrals Cable Cable Tinned Copper Strap FIGURE 7.9: Anode Positioning. It is not necessary to install test stations at all cathodic protection locations. Existing cable that has been in the ground a number of years makes the use of compression connections difficult. FIGURE 7. distribute the anode backfill to surround the anode. the use of RUS-approved connectors should be considered (see Figure 7. the connection to the neutral should be with the best connection (compression. which will put the anode generally in more moist soil and will give maximum output. Freestanding models are much easier to find in rough terrain but may not be aesthetically pleasing if installed in someone’s front yard. In all cases.10. In the years after the cathodic protection is installed.10). Anode connections to the neutral are often a compromise.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 9 5 7 Roadway Ditch Cable Anode Possible Lead Routes 10-Ft Minimum (25 Ft Preferred) • Do not use the anode lead to install the anode. Of course. only one or two test stations are necessary. A few guidelines relative to the actual installation should be observed: . • To improve anode performance.11). It is recommended that the anode and neutral be connected through a 0.1-ohm shunt resistor at test stations to facilitate testing without disconnection in the future (see Figure 7. if not impossible. There are many commercially available test stations in either freestanding or flush-mount models. For example. the concentric neutrals should be thoroughly cleaned and the connection sealed to the extent possible to reduce exposure to soil moisture. if a number of cathodic protection locations are in similar soil along the route. In these cases. turn the anode parallel to the cable or with the anode lead connection furthest from the cable. In all connections below ground. It is relatively easy to complete a compression connection at above-ground locations and when completing the connection on newly installed cable.01-ohm Shunt 1 2 3 Leads to Equipment/Cable Anode Lead FIGURE 7. although this is unlikely. if possible). with its entire length below (one-foot minimum) the protected equipment.11. Threaded Post 0.

in cm (the wire length is 2L cm) wire radius. buried pipes and conductors. in ohm-cm (ohm-m × 100) half the length.2. in cm (the wire length is 2L cm) wire radius. The resistance of a short wire (or cylinder) at a depth greater than its length is given by Equation 7..13 for an equivalent expression using more conventional measurements.4. in cm .2 R= where: R ρ L a s = = = = = ρ 4L 4L s s2 s4 In + In – 2 + – 2 + . Dwight entitled Calculation of Resistances to Ground. in cm (the depth is s/2) Equation 7. in ohms soil resistivity.) The resistance of a vertical rod is given by Equation 7. in ohms soil resistivity. or BCN cable).4.. in cm (the depth is s/2) Equation 7. A search of literature on calculations of resistance to ground reveals that all seem to come from one primary source. in ohms soil resistivity. are calculated by use of Equation 7. in ohm-cm (ohm-m × 100) length of the rod. The resistance of a long horizontal wire or cylinder buried in soil is given by Equation 7. Dwight gives equations for resistance to ground of a long-buried cylinder (wire. in ohm-cm (ohm-m × 100) half the length. Table 7. In – 1 + 3s 5s 4πL a 4πs resistance.4 R= where: R ρ L a = = = = ρ 4L In – 1 2πL a resistance.. Table 7. are calculated by use of Equation 7. (The conductances to ground of BCN cables. in cm twice the depth. are calculated by use of Equation 7. and anodes for cathodic protection.. in cm twice the depth. The source is a work published in 1936 by H. and a vertical rod or cylinder.3. 4πL a s 2L 16L 512L4 resistance. This calculation method applies to the resistance of ground rods. a short buried cylinder (anode).3 R= where: R ρ L a s = = = = = ρ 4L ρ L2 2L4 1 – 2 + 4 . pipe. in cm radius of rod.B. (The resistance and conductance to ground of driven ground rods.) See Equation 5.3. Table 7.2.2 9 6 – Se c t io n 7 7 Calculation of Resistance to Ground The calculation of resistance to ground for purposes of cathodic protection is different from the calculation of ground resistance for purposes of lightning protection as discussed elsewhere in this publication.5.3.6.) Equation 7. (The resistances of sacrificial anodes.

Follow-up measurements should be made after construction to monitor performance of the cathodic protection. many may be ineffective. 9. Anodes must be placed at the lowest soil resistivity locations available. 5. . The electric neutral and grounding system must be treated as a dc circuit. Without cathodic protection. Cathodic protection is now a necessity. Rectifiers must be used with great care until experience has been gained. 6. Soil resistivities must be known. 10. serious property damage and electric shock hazards may occur. 3. and electrical grounding systems. 4. 11. The steps for cathodic protection in electric grounding differ from the practices now 7. efforts to control corrosion are likely to fail. Buried copper as well as steel is vulnerable to corrosion. A schedule must be established for monitoring cathodic protection. Without soil resistivity data. no longer an option. design by “rules of thumb” and assumptions must be avoided. Otherwise. because of the broad shift to underground construction and the use of nonconducting materials underground. 2. Follow-up measurements to monitor the effectiveness of the cathodic protection should be planned. 8.Cathodic Protection Require m e n t s – 2 9 7 7 Summary and Recommendations 1. Soil resistivities must be measured as part of the preconstruction survey. widely used because of differences between underground pipelines. from which the practices evolved.

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many other factors affecting trench design must supplement the national standards to truly accomplish an effective design.) However. Designs based on method of installation (e.g. working relations with local developers and building contractors come into play in establishing methods to use (or not use) in designing direct-buried systems. climate. directional boring). and • Terrain considerations. commercial. burial depths are described in detail. the benefits of a direct-buried system can be realized only if the cooperative’s engineer uses sound judgment in the following: Route selection. in most cases. trenching. plowing. and some industrial consumers.G. Coordination with other utilities. U. and the 2007 National Electrical Safety Code (NESC) (ANSI/IEEE C2) mandates many specific requirements that are to be followed without exception. (Later in this chapter. Trench Construction Considerations RUS Bulletin 1728F-D806 (U. • Roadway/railway standards. Over time. and so on must be thoroughly understood and applied.. other utility practices. Distribution Specifications) and the 2007 NESC describe the basic standards of trench construction.S. local railway system policies.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 2 9 9 8 In This Section: • • • • Direct-Buried System Design Trench Construction Considerations Trench Design Components Trench Layout/Routing Considerations Depth of Burial Joint-Occupancy Trenches Summary and Recommendations Most cooperatives find that direct-buried electrical distribution systems are the most cost-effective method to use for serving residential. First of all. Soil conditions. Trench construction details. Department of Transportation issues. principally in terms of depth. a good working knowledge of local considerations is also a necessary factor. width. and cable separations. However. However. The following questions should be asked when making the decision to use direct-buried systems: • Is there a true likelihood of dig-ins from other utilities (or others) in the location of the project? . Many of these factors are standard and generic for all parts of the country. Material costs are generally less expensive—and labor costs are far less—than for conduit systems. direct-buried systems represent a style of construction that is minimally protected from dig-ins by other utilities or other outside agents.

it is recommended the tape depth be lowered to 18 inches to avoid disruption by maintenance/replacement of the paved surface treatment. which is a major labor-saving device. pedestals. Consistent with industry standards for utility location services. • Multiple cables at varying depths. TRENCH WARNING TAPE Many cooperatives install trench warning tape to assist in preventing dig-ins. which may affect trench design: • Are cables to be installed at multiple depths (e. However. • Depth of burial. and • Quantity of cables to be installed. and can be supplied foil-backed for trench-locating purposes. Trench Design Components In addition to the basic requirements called out by RUS specifications and the NESC. warning tape for electric systems .. Trench warning tape is typically 6 inches wide.). etc. pavement. • Soil conditions. added depth.g. Knowing the answers to the following questions is critical in specifying proper trench units: • Is the available equipment appropriate to provide for effective tamping/soil compaction/installation of trench warning tape given local soil conditions? • What backfilling methods are available for such a narrow excavation? If rocky soil is a consistent issue. Typically. which again should be justified regarding the following: • Additional cost of installation (for reasons of existing landscaping. concrete barrier. There are two types of commonly used plowing methods: the static plow and the vibratory plow (discussed in detail in Book II). considering landscaping or other surface treatments? Second. The following is a list of both material and labor factors that play into a successful design. If the top surface is paved (asphalt or concrete).3 0 0 – Se c t io n 8 8 • Will the installation of trench warning tape(s) protect cables and effectively avoid dig-ins? • Is additional protection—such as conduit. the economic use of plowing needs to be determined on the basis of the following. Backhoe trenches allow better access for proper backfilling and compaction if soil conditions or surface treatment requirements are a concern. or concreteencased duct bank—needed? • Are animals (rodents) an issue? • Are soil conditions (rock) an issue? • Is future cable maintenance an issue. primary at 42 to 48 inches/secondary at 30 to 36 inches)? • Are flexible (HDPE) conduits to be plowed in. the use of a backhoe (12 to 18 inches wide) might be more appropriate to ensure good physical examination of the trench floor for possible installation of clean soil/sand bedding below and above the cable(s). An alternative form of trenching is the plow. with or without cables? • Are sufficient amounts of cables required for installation to justify the cost of plowing equipment/operation? • Are terrain/accessibility/soil types at the job site appropriate for the size of plow required? • Are other utilities planning joint-use participation? • Is the distance between transformers. • Warning tape that cannot be installed. • Ampacity requirements of cables. the cooperative’s engineer needs to evaluate several other design considerations as a part of a successful installation. tapes are installed 12 inches below final grade during the backfilling/compaction process. what construction equipment is available for installation that may alter the design of the trench construction? The most common trench installation is done with conventional chain-type trenchers that provide a trench six to eight inches wide. and switching cabinets such that productivity can be realized? • Will different cable configurations be used sequentially? • Are there other existing utilities or other subsurface features that must be crossed or paralleled? Another alternative form of direct-buried trenching is the directional boring method.

A standard of 90 percent to 95 percent density is typically very difficult to achieve and definitely requires mechanical tamping. or cables expected to be loaded heavily. typically 90 to 95 percent Proctor density levels. The NESC further specifies no machine compacting within six inches of the cable. Some states require the use of warning tapes as a part of their utility-locating programs. undisturbed soils naturally occur at 80 percent to 85 percent Proctor density. If the particular project requires a certain level of advanced compaction. Many state departments of transportation specify minimum compaction standards. trench warning tape can be an effective tool in preventing dig-ins. BACKFILL/COMPACTION The cooperative engineer should be knowledgeable about local soil conditions and should understand what is required for successful backfill/compaction of native soils.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 3 0 1 8 Proctor density standards are based on the maximum compactibility of a given soil in laboratory conditions. many utilities elect to import sand for this purpose. it is typical to call for a minimum bedding of clean backfill four inches below and above the directburied cables to prevent insulation or jacket puncture from rocks (the 2007 NESC specifies four inches of tamped backfill in rocky soils. to put all this into perspective.1: Typical Trench Warning Tape. bulk feeder cables. Though not required by the NESC. FIGURE 8. As a general rule. 2004. Source: Electromark Industries. Locations with rocky conditions require additional care to ensure clean backfill above and below cable systems to avoid jacket or insulation punctures or other cable damage. Gaps between the pole surface and the guard can pose an opportunity for public access to unprotected cable surfaces. Conduit risers generally provide a more satisfactory is usually red with “DANGER—ELECTRIC LINES BURIED BELOW” wording. CABLE COMPACTION BEDS In most trench backfill/compaction specifications. It is not merely a rating of restoring the disturbed earth to assume settling no more than 10 percent to five percent. It should be remembered. 90 percent to 95 percent Proctor density should be specified. respectively. and reference should be made to American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Designation T-99 and ASTM Designation D-698. Not only is the riser often the limiting factor for cable circuit ampacity. RISER POLE DESIGN The riser pole is one part of the underground system that must be carefully considered during the design process. . Sandy or loamy coastal soils compact differently than do stiff clays. Section 352A). however. Compaction testing is relatively simple to perform and many local testing companies provide these services at nominal cost. If finding clean backfill (or screening rocky or unsuitable backfill) is not cost-effective. This lower thermal conductivity can de-rate cable ampacities and should be examined closely on substation circuit exits. The cooperative engineer should also be aware of the site specifics regarding whether the cables are to be trenched on consumers’ premises or on roadway rights-of-way. Cable U-guards must be used with caution. but the physical arrangement of the cable circuit must also be carefully considered. that the thermal conductivity of sand is often much lower than typical native soils.

underground bulk feeder lines. TRENCH MARKERS On underground substation circuit exits.3 0 2 – Se c t io n 8 8 avoid a dig-in. the engineer should consider the installation of cable route markers to denote critical cable routes. and • Being a good “utility neighbor” by notifying other utilities of a critical system. recognizing terrain and likelihood of damage/vandalism in light of the use of the land traversed. a light-duty concrete mix that uses fly ash rather than gravel as its aggregate and sets up at around 400 to 500 psi breaking strength. installation in most cases. and angles or changes in direction. even if vents have to be installed to obtain adequate circuit ampacity.000 to 2. other utility crossings. Conduit supports must be of a design that will prevent unaided climbing by the public. Adequate cable support must be provided at the top of the conduit and supported bends should be installed at the bottom. Most ready-mixed concrete plants offer flowable-fill at 75 to 80 percent of the cost of normal concrete mixes. Neither the 2007 NESC nor RUS require cable route four-inch thick (nonreinforced) layer of concrete 12 to 18 inches below grade to act as a protective barrier from dig-ins. along with the color red and “DANGER—ELECTRIC LINES BURIED BELOW” wording. Also see Section 36 of the National Electrical Safety Code. This 400 to 500 psi rating appears equivalent to concrete when exposed. Route markers typically are specified to be installed every 100 to 200 feet. but can be removed easily with a standard backhoe bucket. or underground transmission lines.500 psi because it should provide enough protection to . but it also must be recognized that the barrier might have to be removed for cable repairs.. or for high-voltage cable installations. The most effective route marker is a plastic pedestal-type marker that extends 24 to 36 inches out of the trench and generally lists contact information. CONCRETE PROTECTION BARRIERS On certain critical bulk feeder installations. Concrete mix should not exceed 2. Conduits (or U-guards) near traffic ways should be placed in a position with minimum exposure to traffic. Trench warning tape added above the dye-tinted concrete may also reduce the probability of dig-ins. In rural areas. Consideration should be given to requesting that the ready-mixed concrete (or flowable-fill mixes) be tinted with red dye for added recognition as an electric cable barrier. Electro-Mark “DoMark” Style Mfg. Some utilities use flowable-fill. consideration should be given to pouring a three. Typically. Most state departments of transportation approve this mix on rights-of-way. as the philosophy of the use of these devices is a combination of the following: • Marking the route for cable protection/dig-in avoidance.2: Cable Route Marker. at road intersections. the normal spacings of these markers over straightline trench routes can be lengthened to every 1/8 to 1/4 mile. these barriers should be used selectively and only for specific instances in which circuit continuity is critical. Many other aspects of riser design are covered elsewhere in this publication. FIGURE 8. 2005.

Bridges require additional separation. if required. Railway systems require special attention. more important. to avoid mechanical shear on cables resulting from freezing and thawing creating contraction and expansion forces on cables. A utility crossing or installation close by needs to reflect the need to not undermine either utility with the initial trench installation or in future maintenance excavations.2.). causing cable damage (2007 NESC 320.A. as per NESC 351. CATV. Cables should not extend under buildings but. or manholes generally are not allowed. on the effectiveness and workability of the routing selected for the site conditions. to a large degree. 3. repairs. as the 2007 NESC calls for 50-inch minimum burial depth below the top of the rails (36inch depth if the rail system is a trolley car line). . Cables closer to steam lines than 18 to 24 inches will require thermal insulation material between the two systems. but pedestals. streams. Without mandates by industry standards or regulations. and steam lines. 5. or unstable soils that could shift. Direct-buried cables should be not closer to in-ground swimming pools (or auxiliary pool equipment) than five feet. Cables should be installed below the seasonal frost line in an area. (Many state departments of transportation provide minimum separations and added burial depths.A.C. both for initial construction ease and for future troubleshooting.2). Cables may be permitted parallel to tracks on their rights-ofway. conduit must be added. 12 inches is the established minimum separation between electric lines and other utilities. junction boxes. Bends and turns should respect equipment capabilities. gas. Following are considerations about other physical entities along the trench route. Most railway companies mandate steel conduit or casings for electric circuit installations—rather than bare. 7. water. Cable routes should be selected to avoid natural detriments such as swamps. both for cable protection and to ensure trenching operations do not undermine bridge supports. and implies cables should be located so they will be subjected to minimal future disturbance.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 3 0 3 8 The consuming public tends to regard cable route markers as an eyesore.5.C. as per NESC 320. each utility can require additional separation by mutual agreements.A. respect minimum cable bending radii. Trench Layout/ Routing Considerations The successful layout/design of an underground electrical distribution system depends. 1. However. bad or corrosive soils. must have mechanical protection (conduit) and should be done in a manner that avoids foundation settlement and does not damage cable systems (NESC 351. mud. including telephone. The 2007 NESC specifies this in 351. and cable location efforts. If this separation is not possible.1. directburied cables—often over the entire expanse 4. which can lead to vandalism. if possible. Steam lines require additional separation to avoid problems with heat dissipation.) 2. which reduces cable ampacities.2. and.a. steep slopes. of the railroad right-of-way. cooperatives find maintenance of route markers ongoing. Many railway systems require additional burial depths for crossings and have many restrictions for longitudinal routes. 6. Other utilities should be recognized when routes are selected to avoid crossing conflicts and to provide each utility with the ability to maintain its lines in the future. Many telephone and CATV utilities require greater separation distances of five to 15 feet to provide for maintenance of lines. Typically. Cable routes along roadways (longitudinally) should be in the shoulder area far enough away to avoid undermining the road surface and to avoid disturbance from road surface maintenance. sewer. Routing should be selected from point to point in the straightest path to provide a logical geographical layout.

inspecify burial depths in excess of the NESC mincluding the following: imums. changes after completion. prevent cable burial at the required minimum cover is the distance from the top of depth. particularly in The 2007 NESC requires a minimum radial areas subject to cultivation. margin for installation error and minor surface • Natural gas lines. NESC minimums. It must be recognized • Water lines.3 0 4 – Se c t io n 8 8 Depth of Burial The NESC specifies the minimum earth cover reSome existing soil conditions. supplemental protection must Burial depths To achieve the minimum protect the cable from damage cover. The deeper trench depth alor concrete-encased conduit. derground facilities. It also provides more room using random separation. lows for a three. for primary systems. other utility can agree to a lesser separation if the following apply: 601–50.3 illustrates minimum allowable burial depths for various caCLEARANCE FROM OTHER UTILITIES bles.2.001 volts and over phase-to-phase 42 in. and 36 to 42 inches a 12-inch radial separation. Adapted from the 2007 ity’s lines. Conduit. The 2007 NESC 352. NESC Secminimize dig-ins and future shallow cable issues tion 354 contains extensive special requirements resulting from change in grade as a result of for both electric and communication utilities farming practices. particularly in areas from other utilities must not be less than 12 where rights-of-way are narrow or congested inches. * Area or streetlight cables only if conflicts with other underground facilities exist • There is no harmful interaction between systems. separation.000 volts phase-to-phase 30 in. This added depth helps to may agree to use random separation. These minimum separations should provide enough space for either utility to work on its underground lines without damaging the other utilTABLE 8. The NESC also recommends 12 inches of vertical separation at crossings of different un0–150 volts phase-to-ground (streetlight cable ONLY)* 18 in. 50. such as solid or quired over direct-buried power cables. If this is not possible with a 12-inch NESC. terrain or available easements prevent inches for primary cables.1 shows the 2007 protection is provided. separation for future cable installations. However. and lowances for areas where the surface may be • CATV lines. and for the cable diameter.b allows lesser the cable to the earth surface.D. Figure four-inch is the typical method of supsoil bedding under the cable plemental cable protection.) with multiple utilities. consideration should separation of 12 inches from other utilities. to accommodate all types the cooperative and a telephone or cable utility of farm machinery. then a greater separation is necesOperating Voltage Minimum Cover sary. (See NESC Sections 353 and 354. at the earth surface. Table 352-1. This NESC requirements. For these instances.1: Minimum Cover Requirements. This layered rock. The cooperative and the 0–600 volts phase-to-phase 24 in. for secondary cables. Typical trench depths are 30 to 36 inches for secondary cable and 36 to 42 inches • Sewers. that the cooperative should make special al• Telephone lines. Another requirement for direct-buried power caThe cooperative’s engineer should typically bles is separation from other buried utilities. and . make the trench depth resulting from normal activity should exceed the three to four inches greater. in rural areas. burial depths if supplemental Table 8. For example. lowered later. These depths allow some • Fuel lines. Ocbe given to using burial depths of 42 to 48 casionally.

3. P 2” W UR2–2 (D × W) Trenching Unit Power and Telephone Cable TRENCHES FOR DIRECT BURIAL CABLES D 12” Minimum 4” T 2000 UR2 UR2–2 TO FIGURE 8. 2.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 3 0 5 8 D D 4” 4” 2” W UR2 (D × W) Trenching Unit One Cable or Cable Assembly 2” W UR2–1 (D × W) Trenching Unit Multiple Power Cables Primary. Depth (D) and width (W) are specified in description of units. Optional warning tape is recommended to be placed above the installed cable. Backfilling is part of all trenching units.3: Burial Depth Requirements. Sand bedding is not part of these units and will be specified as needed. 5. including joint-use trenches. . Over-excavate trenches as necessary to allow for (a) sand bedding or (b) loose sandy soils or (c) where more than one cable will be installed in trench and laying first cable may cause trench damage and reduction in depth. or Service LEGEND Sand or Clean Soil Compacted Backfill Unless Otherwise Specified Undisturbed Earth NOTES: 1. Adapted from RUS Bulletin 1728F-806. 6. 4. Depths specified are to finished grade. Secondary.

C. Steam lines create cooperative engineer may consider supplemenhigh ambient earth temperatures that signifital protection. all times afterward. then the burial depth must be increased. Increasinstalling facilities before final grade is estabing the depth of burial. sewer. If the stalling any cable. This. PVC conduit or encasement in concrete.c requires the minimum cover requirecreases the chances for accidental dig-ins where ment to be met at the time of installation and at there is reduced separation. Preferably. underground power cable should not The forces of nature are also factors in deterbe installed directly under building or storage mining proper burial depth. 351. the tank foundations. then the chances of cable ter final grade. For example. This is particuplaced along the front proplarly true with secondary caerty lines. water. Other • Each utility can access its facilities without damaging the other’s facilities. the structure must have adeearth movement caused by frost formation can quate support to prevent a harmful load transfer move the buried cable and nearby objects. To avoid these problems. very close attention should be given All these requirements mean that the design to clean bedding material near the cable during engineer must be thoroughly familiar with site backfilling. along with firm tamping.D. or gas lines. If the cable is on the underground other utilities. . tional burden during construction and becomes A final consideration is clearance from underdependent on the developer to make final adground structures. In some areas. Other utilities have the potential to not only cause substantial disOTHER CONSIDERATIONS ruption to electric service when they fail. These chances insubdivision is at final grade Dig-ins are the crease even more when the before individual driveways major cause of faults power cable is installed before are constructed. a thermal barrier must stalled in the proximity of existing or future be placed between the facilities. If adequate particularly true if the cable circuit is being inseparation is not feasible. bles. The best way to meet this Another consideration for placing cable requirement is to wait until final grade before indeeper is protection from random dig-ins. The neath a structure. will conditions and intended uses before establishing minimize the opportunity for the freeze-thaw a cable route and choosing an appropriate burial cycle to move the cable against stones. because their required buried deeper in anticipation burial depth is only 30 to 36 of an earth cut for driveway inches. a damage by these other utilities developer will state that the increase. the cooperative incurs a substantial addicable. If a cable must be placed befrost level reaches the cable burial depth. the cooperative engineer avoids these areas during the project layout phase. The cooperative engineer area is congested with other underground utilimust also anticipate grade changes that occur afties. but reAnother aspect to consider when choosing a pair of the other utilities will often require burial depth is grade change. these areas. In to the cable. This in352. The 2007 NESC excavation under emergency conditions. if cable must be installed in these Steam lines with only the required 12-inch areas. can help reduce dig-ins.3 0 6 – Se c t io n 8 8 natural hazards are areas subject to erosion. However. especially on secondary lished. the cooperative engiThe potential forces of man are also a factor neer must route power cable outside the effecto consider in the layout of the system. If ports that dig-ins are the major cause of faults the cooperative accommodates the developer by on the underground secondary system. According to the 2007 NESC justments to match plans. This is tive thermal range of a steam line. An industry survey reand sidewalk construction.2. the underground power cable.2. such as installation in Schedule 40 cantly decrease the ampacity rating of the cable. then it needs to be secondary system. separation can lead to thermal damage of the If the area has moderate to severe erosion.

NESC also allows the random • Water. Any route changes required by field conditions must be clearly recorded by construction personnel so this information can be included in permanent project maps. voltage cables in the same • CATV. can be horizontal or vertical of 12 inches. the cooperative can place primary and secondary • Telephone. and can share randomseparation of some power and • Sewer (not generally separation joint communication cables if cerrecommended). the cables will .2 summarizes the Trench sharing with storm types of power cables that can or sanitary sewers is generally be in random separation with not practical because of the telephone and cable television cables. Failure of the designconstruction team to follow a proper route at a proper depth will likely increase the number of consumer outages and require future relocation of the underground lines. Joint-Occupancy Trenches interfere with access and be more susceptible to The NESC recognizes two types of joint trench: accidental damage by other deliberate separation and ranutility crews. Table 8. trench at the same depth with • Gas (not generally Only certain utilities no horizontal separation. The table size disparity in the facilities. In addition. tain requirements are met.4. sewer also lists the requirements that the cooperative is lines are often excavated for replacement or to responsible for according to the 2007 NESC. The NESC to share a trench with the folallows random separation of different electric lowing utilities: power cables.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 3 0 7 8 depth. The recommended). clear obstructions. For example. trenches. Information on the route and depth must be communicated clearly to construction personnel. strictive. only certain utilities Maintaining the 12-inch sepacan place their facilities with ration allows electric utilities random separation. A deliberateThe NESC defines random separation joint trench reDeliberate-separation separation as any common quires a minimum of 12 inches trench arrangement in which of separation between the difjoint trenches require the cables have fewer than 12 ferent utilities. This separation a minimum separation inches of radial separation. This type of joint trench is reand is illustrated in Figure 8. dom separation. In these cases.

including joint-use trenches. Sand bedding is not part of these units and will be specified as needed. 3. Depths specified are to finished grade. 12” P 2” UR2–4 (D × W) Primary and Secondary or Telephone TRENCHES FOR DIRECT BURIAL CABLES 2000 UR2–3 UR2–5 TO FIGURE 8. Secondary. Backfilling is part of all trenching units. Adapted from RUS Bulletin 1728F-806. and Telephone D S 12” Minimum 4” T NOTES: 1. . 5. Depth (D) and width (W) are specified in description of units. 4. Over-excavate trenches as necessary to allow for (a) sand bedding or (b) loose and sandy soils or (c) where more than one cable will be installed in trench and laying first cable may cause trench damage and reduction in depth.3 0 8 – Se c t io n 8 8 W LEGEND Bedding Sand or Clean Soil Compacted Backfill Unless Otherwise Specified Undisturbed Earth D 4” S 2” UR2–3 (D × W) Service or Secondary and Telephone D 12” Minimum T W W P 2” S 12” Minimum 4” T UR2–5 (D × W) Primary. 2.4: Joint Trench Use.

Cable plowing does not open a trench and eliminates the need to backfill.Direct-Buried System De s i g n – 3 0 9 8 TABLE 8. and trenching distance. Chute plowing should be used to install cable without conduit. 3Ø grounded-wye 4. • Minimum of eight ground rods per mile.470/7. 1Ø or 3Ø 12. Selecting the appropriate equipment depends on soil type. then covered with four inches of select backfill.940/14.400 V. 1Ø or 3Ø 34. cable should be placed on a four-inch (minimum) bedding of select backfill. Avoid mechanical compaction within six inches of a cable. • When faulted. • Ground conductor must be adequate to withstand available fault conditions. . trenching depth. • Concentric neutral must be corrosion-resistant material. 25-. 4. 3. 1Ø or 3Ø 12. 25-. Short sections of conduit for crossing under roads are allowed if neutral is continuous in conduit.000-foot intervals (maximum spacing). Type of Power Cable 600-V Insulated Cable Operating Voltage 240/120 V. 3Ø delta 208/120 V. may require directional boring or horizontal directional drilling. • Copper concentric conductor must be effectively grounded. There are two types of joint trench. 1Ø or 3Ø 24.2: Requirements for Random-Lay Joint Trench. not including grounds at individual services.] • Ground conductor must be in continuous contact with earth. Compaction should be made to 95 percent Proctor density where settlement control is important. The most common method for installing cable is trenching in suburban areas and plowing in rural areas.160/2.940/14.kV Jacketed Concentric Neutral Cable • Direct Buried or • Installation in Nonmetallic Conduit 4. Adapted from 2007 NESC Section 354. or 35. Long sections of conduit require installation of a separate ground conductor that is in contact with the earth and close to the cable.200 V.000-foot intervals (maximum spacing). Pull plowing is suitable for installing flexible conduit or cable in conduit. such as existing subdivisions where cable replacement is considered.900 V.500/19. • Minimum conductance of concentric neutral must equal one-half conductance of phase conductor. Some locations. 1Ø or 3Ø 24. 3Ø. Conduit should be used wherever additional cable protection is required or where the deferral of future excavation costs will justify the additional initial expense. the cable will be promptly de-energized. 2. Covering should continue with native clean backfill and compaction. 1Ø or 3Ø Summary and Recommendations 1. Deliberate-separation joint trench requires a minimum separation of 12 inches.400 V.470/7. delta systems cannot be in random-lay with communication cables. • Semiconducting jacket must have a radial resistivity of 100 ohm-m or less. Requirements 15-.400 V. Typical trench depths are 30 to 36 inches for secondary cable and 42 to 48 inches for primary cable (36 and 48 inches should be strongly considered in many rural areas).400 V. 6. • Ground conductor and communication cable shield or sheath must be bonded at 1. 7. • Ground conductor and communication cable shield or sheath must be bonded at 1.500/19.160/2. Randomseparation joint trench is very restrictive.kV Bare Concentric Neutral Cable or Semiconducting Jacketed Cable 15-.200 V. • Ground conductor must be adequate to withstand available fault conditions. or 35. terrain. 1Ø or 3Ø None [NOTE: 480-V or 600-V. For trenches in rocky soils. 1Ø or 3Ø 34. 5. 1Ø 240 V. 3Ø grounded-wye 480/277 V. • Prompt de-energization of a faulted conductor.900 V.

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The next level in the hierarchy of conduit systems is a concrete-encased duct bank. In fact. Manholes and/or splice boxes can also be strategically located to eliminate bends or sharp angles in conduit runs. but it has the lowest initial cost of all conduit systems. Where conduit runs are longer than allowable cable-pulling lengths. Direct-buried conduit is simply installed in a trench and conventional backfill techniques are used. . Although conduit-enclosed cable installations have a higher initial cost. particularly if bends are involved. and exits for small substations. This approach generally requires a stronger conduit (Schedule 40 or better). However. This is generally used where multiple circuits are installed. Concrete encased with manholes (or splice boxes). encased conduit is advised for longer runs. conduit systems may offer many substantial advantages to electric utilities. Direct buried. and • Lower ampacity for a given cable size. or where access for laterals or taps is needed. • Ability to add cables along the route without additional excavation. Major advantages of conduit installation include the following: • Improved cable protection from dig-ins. The disadvantages when compared with direct burial are the following: • Higher initial cost. the lifetime advantages may make them the preferable installation in a variety of circumstances. These allow intermediate pull points that will lead to lower cable-pulling tensions. Typical direct-buried conduit installations are street crossings. or will be installed. single-circuit runs. the length of runs is limited by cable-pulling criteria. manholes and/or splice boxes must be installed for access and splicing. Concrete encased. in loose soils. As with direct-buried conduits. along a route. and 3. 2. Direct-buried conduit is particularly suitable where only minimal mechanical protection is needed and low cost is important. CONDUIT SYSTEM TYPES Distribution system conduit installations generally fall into one of three categories: 1. Encased conduit is also advisable where additional mechanical protection from dig-ins is needed. the encased conduit will be more stable under high cable-pulling tensions.Conduit System De s i g n – 3 1 1 9 In This Section: Conduit System Design Conduit System Design Conduit System Design and Installation Cable Pulling Summary and Recommendations In some situations. • Ability to replace cable without excavation. and • Better use of utility easement for multiple circuits.

The conduit comes in smooth harder to bend. Where the conduit. the solvent cement CONDUIT TYPES welds on ABS and PVC are chemically different. Such conduits are lighter in work within. Each of that a cooperative not mix these conduit materithese materials is offered in several configurations. Although steel than precut straight lengths. below-grade electrical metallic tubing (EMT) and intermediate enclosures that allow personnel to enter and metal conduit. a manhole installation will Metallic conduit other than galvanized Schedsimplify access to the cable circuits and produce ule 40 (or Schedule 80) should never be used on a more flexible system. galvanized ing on the application. and usually only three to five feet duit. costs will justify the additional The predominant material is not generally be used initial expense. and also comes in multisteel conduit is magnetic. other than galvanized ever additional cable Plastic conduits are now Schedule 40 (or protection is required or the available to utilities in a wide Schedule 80) should deferral of future excavation variety of sizes and materials. In addition. the project. splice boxes are where atmospheric corrosion is a concern and worked from the surface and earth contact can be avoided. and fiberglass-reinforced epoxy (FRE). Much smaller in size. bank systems are particularly examples. Examples are riser poles or some diconduit and generally comes on reels. Reels can be provided unbalanced currents (such as a single-phase . not intended for persongeneral exception is Schedule 40 aluminum connel entrance. where the flexible nature of the conduit is dig-in. Over the years. ture requirement. and are eight feet of head room. exist. Manhole/duct PVC and will be used in all on a utility system. such service points are either a present or a funonmagnetic conduits must be used. HDPE. Type 304L or Type 316 Metallic conduit In summary. It is an advantage. usually with six to weight. ABS and PVC should main conduits used on UD systems are steel and never be mixed on a project. have less secure couplings. When this condition is encountered. conduit sysstainless steel conduits might tems are recommended wherbe considered. Today. Splice boxes are usuoften more susceptible to corrosion. als on its system as different solvent cements are The steel conduit that utilities use almost exrequired and defective joints will be produced if clusively is galvanized Schedule 40. It is also advisable plastic (predominantly PVC and HDPE). materials include acrylonitrilecontinuous runs of multiple butadiene-styrene (ABS) plascircuit underground are expected over the life of tic. steel does have its disadvantages. HDPE conduit is conduit generally provides better protection particularly useful in directional bored applicathan does a similar-size PVC conduit during a tions. Types not recommended include Typically. and corrugated wall. rather rect-buried conduit applications. Longer duct runs may also need to be will produce heat as a result of eddy currents in tapped for intermediate service locations. standing erect. Other nonmetallic advantageous where long. dependoften more expensive. generally involve only one to Where corrosive conditions two feeders. manholes are full-size. ribbed wall. a utility system. mostly used where extra mechanical protection HDPE conduit is much more flexible than PVC is needed. the electric utility industry has so neither will give satisfactory results on the used a wide variety of conduit types. This means that heavy ple colors and markings. susceptible to corrosion. This type is the products are accidentally interchanged. the other conduit. Therefore. but it has higher wall thickness to compensate for a lower material strength.3 1 2 – Se c t io n 9 9 Judicious location of manholes will also lower conductor in its own steel conduit. without a pulling tensions and yield a more convenient inneutral return) passing through a steel conduit stallation. which might be used in some locations deep. and wall. The only ally surface mounted. ABS conduit is similar to PVC. Furthermore.

ment. comencased conduit duct banks. the bottom must be leveled to provide Asbestos cement duct. was made of Direct-Buried Conduit Design and Installation molded wood fiber impregnated with an asThe most common type of conduit application is phaltic compound. Conduit types classified “above ground” larly attractive for duct lines suspended beneath may be used in either location. However. gained wide acceptance in concretemust be cushioned with a layer of clean. FRE condirect burial (DB) and encased burial (EB) mean duit. that all above-ground exposure must be These characteristics make FRE conduit particuavoided. Fiber duct was used mainly the direct-buried system. conduit. amplify cable-pulling tensions. It also saw use as pacted fill to avoid high-pressure points on the a direct-buried conduit. (e. It only those conduits classified for above-ground can also be installed with longer unsupported use may be applied in sunlight. When the trench is being pregain wide acceptance with electric utilities. often known by the trade name Orangeburg. This is placed on a smooth trench bottom before material was naturally very heavy and did not backfill is placed. Rock outcroppings Transite™. and asbestos ceFRE manufacturer. The one caution. pared. to HDPE conduit is concerns about asbestos content. while seemingly inTable 9. For EB conduit rials most commonly used similar information on FRE above ground. the additional curved bends. it would taining the electrical cable is placed into the eventually absorb moisture and deteriorate. a ous conduit configurations. asbestos cethat it tends to have a coiled “memory” and canment conduit is no longer installed. One important determination for a conduit FRE conduit is a specialty item generally used application is whether it will be used strictly unin applications more typically associated with derground or if it may have above-ground instalsteel conduit because FRE conduit can have lations. Here. since the 1950s include fiber. As solar radiation affects most plastics. Classifications of spans without excessive long-term sag.1 gives the specific classifications of significant during conduit installation.2 shows the dimensions of these variThroughout the history of electric utilities.Conduit System De s i gn – 3 1 3 9 with continuous lengths up to 4. has high corrosion resistance. bridges and for riser installations. Major advantages inconduit when backfill is placed. the conduit buried conduit or multiple-tile duct.4 lists Never use DB or conduits to terra cotta tile the impact strength of the variducts. Some of the other mateous sizes of PVC conduit.g. tion. not be allowed to curve in the trench floor bePlastic conduit is the most commonly used fore compaction. Fiber duct. This support is important to provide stabilinflexible.000 feet. cluded a smooth interior surface and very high The initial backfill layer should be tamped on flame resistance. monly used on electric systems. straight line. Therefore. refer to the specific concrete. this material was exthe sides of the conduit to develop sidewall suptremely hard and brittle. When crete duct was generally installed as a directthe installation is made by trenching.D. like PVC. It was also extremely port. even then. These conduit types in the four-inch range from early treated wood nominal size. Table 9. required special skills and care during installatwo-inch inside diameter [I. The combination of these characteristics ity during the pulling process and to resist . greatly plastic conduit. If the conknowledge of the plastic conduit types comduit is not installed in a controlled. the conduit conin concrete encasement but. Table 9. Eliminating these curves can electrical duct material. Conground without additional encasement. Table 9. With the advent of economical PVC and and possibly only drawback. otherwise known as even support to the conduit.].. engineering be very difficult when the coiled HDPE conduit and construction personnel need a working is being installed in an open trench.3 compares variety of other conduit matethe relative strengths of these rials have been used. higher strength than even Schedule 80 PVC.

061 0. extra strength Direct burial Direct burial.0 17.2 N/A * Specifically. pounds per inch deflection at five percent change in internal diameter . above ground Heavy duty.3: Comparison of Characteristics for Four-Inch Diameter PVC Duct.182 TC-8 EB-35 DB-120 Schedule 40 Schedule 80 0. Weight.7 220.5 310. direct burial HDPE.154 0.121 0.0 60.216 0.0 108.125 0. lb.6 80.8 Characteristics Collapse pressure. psi Impact resistance.0 310. UL651A ASTM F512 ASTM F512 ASTM F512 — UL 651 UL 651 ASTM D3035 ASTM D2239 ASTM D2160 ASTM D3035 ASTM D2239 ASTM D2160 ASTM D3035 ASTM D2239 ASTM D2160 Description and Application Encased burial Encased burial.0 234.7 25.092 0.082 0.0 60.218 0.191 0.0 461.1: Classifications of Plastic Conduit.375 0. Corrugated HDPE TC-7 Normal duty.0 92. direct burial HDPE.076 0.* HDPE-40 96. lb. ft-lb.126 0.0 35.258 0. TC-6 PVC EB-20 DB-60 6.0 158. Conduit Size Minimum Inside Diameter 2” 3” 4” 5” 6” TC-6 EB-20 DB-60 0.152 0.060 0.152 0./100 feet Pipe stiffness.077 0.0 109.300 0.0 127. Smooth-Wall Material PVC PVC PVC PVC PE PVC PVC HDPE NEMA TC-6 TC-8 TC-6 TC-8 — TC-2 TC-2 TC-7 Other ASTM F512.0 120.237 0.060 0.337 0.118 0. Type III Schedule 80.2 326.154 0.060 0. Specification Conduit Designation EB-20 EB-35 DB-60 DB-120 Schedule 40.216 0.2 40.280 0.103 0.258 0.0 N/A 136.0 117./in. direct burial Normal duty.2: PVC Duct Dimensions—Minimum Wall Thickness.237 0.100 0. direct burial TABLE 9. Type II Schedule 40. Ribbed HDPE TC-7 Normal duty.280 TABLE 9.0 TC-8 PVC EB-35 DB-120 Schedule 40 Schedule 80 9.0 36.3 1 4 – Se c t io n 9 9 TABLE 9. above ground Normal duty. extra strength Normal duty.432 HDPE-40 0.227 0. Type IV HDPE.154 0.0 20.

the conduit will be unusable or may joints can separate. Installations of this type If the decision is made to use close spacing of require careful site investigation and advance conduits for individual enclosure of large. This clearance not only where multiple circuits are required along conwill allow for proper backfill placement and gested routes or where extra physical protection tamping but also will improve heat dissipation. short runs of straight. jointed Schedule 40 conduit should be used instead of conduit sections may be installed by the pull-in Type DB for direct-buried installations. is being inbecause its wall is thinner. In some cases. ally present or clean backfill cannot be ensured. otherwise. make the conduit until an adequate sure the conduit installation is thickness of backfill has been Curves in coilable straight and does not have placed.Conduit System De s i gn – 3 1 5 9 TABLE 9. able polyethylene product will usually be used. Unexpected conflicts with unstand the point pressures created by conduit-toderground obstructions can cause major problems conduit contact. by this phenomenon can drasand the soil characteristics. Crushing forces can also be resizes larger than two inches or duced by not tamping above during cool weather. increase cable-pulling from the reel. with or without a cable. In these cases. concrete-encased Where conduit is installed by plowing. Conduit Size Minimum Inside Diameter 2” 3” 4” 5” 6” TC-6 EB-20 20 20 25 30 40 DB-60 20 40 60 85 120 EB-35 20 30 40 55 75 TC-8 DB-120 25 50 80 110 150 Schedule 40 Schedule 80 190 220 220 220 220 300 525 525 525 525 be accomplished successfully in moderate temcrushing when full vertical backfill pressure is peratures with proper equipment. The trench must be wide enough to . the these cases. a minimum Concrete-Encased Duct Design and Installation of three inches of clearance must be provided Concrete-encased duct banks are generally used between the conduits. these duct line and the need to keep it straight and should be Class DB-120 or Schedule 40 to withproperly graded. The thickness of backbends caused by conduit fill required will depend on conduit can greatly “memory” as it is removed the force applied by the tamp. highplanning. as a large multiple-conduit. This type of installation begins with an open Plowing of coilable polyethylene conduit may trench. a coilduct line is being installed. With conduit applied later. In cured before pulling begins. particularly because of the size of the capacity cables (this is not recommended). Failure plow method. This condition should ceptible to crushing than also be avoided if a coilable Schedule 40 (or 80) conduit conduit. Curves caused the surface area of the tamp. tensions. tically increase cable-pulling Type DB conduit is more sustensions. If rocky soils are usustalled by conventional trenching. damage cable during installation.4: PVC Duct—Impact Strength (Foot-Pounds). it is extremely imto follow these guidelines will lead to conduit portant that all joints are properly made and with blockages or reduced inside dimensions. for cables is warranted. If multiple conduits for electric circuits are being installed in the same trench.

there is no need for the stronger and more expensive mix in unreinforced duct bank encasements. Although standard ready-mix concretes are often delivered with strengths of 3. such as a manhole. which will readily flow between ducts must be used. He can then design an economical mix that will meet the special needs of duct bank construction.500 to 2. The concrete supplier should be consulted beforehand in order to get the proper concrete mix at the job site. three important requirements should always be verified: 2" Min. 3-Way Direct-Buried 3-Way Concrete-Encased 6-Way Concrete-Encased 9-Way Concrete-Encased * Designates Circuit Location Undesirable for Loaded Circuit 12-Way Concrete-Encased FIGURE 9. A minimum of two inches of horizontal concrete cover should be provided between the outside ducts and the trench wall.000 to 4. The trench bottom should be adequately compacted where conduit support spacers will be installed. three inches of clearance should be provided between conduits (see Figure 9. For proper heat dissipation. and properly protect cables. It is also vitally important that vibration be used during the pouring process. A concrete slump of seven to eight inches must also be specified to allow reasonable flow. where water can be removed from the system. Extra trench width will lead to the need for unnecessary concrete. provide proper duct spacing and side clearances.3 1 6 – Se c t io n 9 9 3" Min. For electrical distribution duct lines. generally one-half-inch or less. Loose material in the trench bottom should be removed or compacted so the duct bank will have proper support at all points. Concrete that has small aggregate. Trench design should also recognize the desirability of well-drained conduits. While the overall slope of the trench is important. the conduit must be graded so there are no local pockets that can accumulate water. During the actual pouring process.1). Vibration will facilitate the flow of concrete and minimize voids. .500 psi.” A slump value higher than eight inches is not recommended as the high fluid content will make it more difficult to hold the conduits in place during the pouring process. as the trench wall will generally be used as a form for the concrete encasement. This requires sloping of the conduit to a point. The slump value is a measure of how much fluid is in the concrete. the trench must not be made too wide. Each section of conduit can be sloped in a single direction or it can be drained toward each end. Concrete installed around duct banks must be properly placed to fill all voids. provide optimum heat transfer. Concrete strength should be specified in the range of 1.1: Typical Duct Configurations. three inches of concrete cover should be provided at both the top and bottom extremities of the bank. A higher slump value means the concrete contains more fluid and is “wetter. A simple way to maintain these dimensions both vertically and horizontally is by using conduit spacers. Establishing a well-drained conduit system will facilitate cable installation and removal as well as improving the cable operating environment.500 psi. However.

per cubic foot. As an alternative to the precast concrete suitcases. a hopper (funnel) and hose arrangement can be attached to minimize the free-fall distance. This example shows how important it is to keep concrete slump as low as practicable and to use only as much vibration as needed to achieve good concrete flow. coupled with the characteristics of the design area. When pouring concrete encasement. If the fall distance is too great. there will be two adverse results: .5 shows that the compressive strength of five-inch type EB-20 conduit is 5.03 psi/ft of depth to find the compressive force (in psi) on the lowest conduit. often called “suitcases. the collapse pressure rating of the particular conduit should be computed with the expected compressive force on the bottom conduit during pouring.Conduit System De s i gn – 3 1 7 9 • Hold-down of the duct and spacers.1 feet) deep. some manufacturers of duct spacers have provisions for driving hold-down rods through the spacers to avoid conduit floating. causing voids. Present and future requirements must also be determined for circuits traversing the design area to serve loads in other areas. GENERAL CONDUIT SYSTEM LAYOUT The first problem in engineering an underground conduit system is determining the loads to be served by the system. a higher grade of conduit such as EB-35 would be required. if a three-layer duct bank has a layer of five-inch conduit with three inches of top cover and three inches between layers.” should be applied to the top of the conduit before pouring. loose dirt will be embedded in the wet concrete.2 psi. coupled with nonmetallic bands or straps. can also be used to prevent conduit floating. Table 9. both now and in the future. the distance that the wet concrete falls into the trench should be minimized. All the above conditions must be avoided for a satisfactory duct installation. thus requiring longer hold-down rods driven deeper. An excessive free-fall distance may disrupt the conduit configuration or break joints. the lowest conduit is about 25 inches (2. When large duct banks (above six-way) are being installed. this application of EB-20 is satisfactory. Otherwise. Caution should be used with hold-down rods in soft soil and larger duct bank configurations. The aggregate will tend to segregate out of the concrete mix. This method. Slump of concrete. To counteract the maximum possible buoyancy of a six-way. should not be walked on to avoid cracking. or deformation of the conduit. The amount of weight needed to keep conduit from floating is determined by the buoyancy of the empty conduits in wet concrete. and 2. Size of conduits. thereby producing porous (honeycomb) sections in the encasements. The use of a splash board will also help direct the concrete flow into the trench and should be used to prevent concrete flow against unsupported trench walls. five-inch duct bank. If the ready-mix delivery truck chute cannot be placed near the top of the ducts. Softer soils offer lower pullout resistance.9 psi. Precast concrete weights. collapse. the slump value should be fewer than eight inches to provide friction that will help keep conduits in place. These requirements. Use of vibration. • Control of the concrete flow. These weights will keep the conduit from floating when it is surrounded with wet concrete. The amount of weight required will depend on the following factors: • • • • • Number of conduits. This produces a compressive force of approximately 2. will determine the type of underground system to be installed. If the compressive force had approached the conduit rating of 5. and Other anchoring methods used. To make this calculation. given that the concrete has a unit weight of about 150 lb. the depth of the lowest conduit in feet is multiplied by 1. a 150-lb.weight is needed on each foot of duct line while the concrete is being poured. and • Prevention of duct collapse. Therefore. 1. As noted above. For instance. Crews must be instructed that conduits. particularly the thinner-wall Type EB varieties.9 psi.

6 EB-35 11.2 TC-8 DB-120 26. Communication conduits are for the installation of circuits owned and maintained by the .2 9. Regardless of whether direct-buried conduit or encased conduit is chosen. Turning of the upper ducts is simpler and allows the lower conduits to continue straight with the main conduit run.7 5.2 15.2.5: PVC Duct Collapse Pressure (PSI).6 6. In the case of sites near substations. See Figure 9. the obvious answer may be direct-buried circuits.6 34. any underground circuits that will pass through the design area should be considered. However. the through-circuits may be the only factor considered.0 36. the conduit system configuration should be designed to accommodate the circuits in each location.5 57.3). particularly if the secondaries are serving a load at an intermediate point in the duct run. Duct bank configurations of greater than three conduits are generally installed using concrete encasement. construction conditions are difficult. Conduit Size Minimum Inside Diameter 2" 3" 4" 5" 6" TC-6 EB-20 11.6 38. generally with an open-loop configuration.9 6.2 8.3 1 8 – Se c t io n 9 9 TABLE 9. Street and area lighting conduits should be located in the upper corners of the duct bank (see Figure 9.5 235. If a transformer location will provide service through radial secondary circuits.3 326. After the circuit design is complete.3 108. Standard conduit configurations as shown in Figure 9.0 Schedule 40 Schedule 80 117. Inner conduits should not be used for heavily loaded cable circuits as heat dissipation is much better for peripheral locations.5 For example.1 181. if only a limited space is available for installing electric circuits. Lighting conduits should be looped to facilitate multiple light locations to be served by a single circuit. the first step is to define loads within the design area and determine the transformer locations required to provide service.7 75.2 38. or several circuit additions are expected over the life of the facility. Section 4 discusses further the thermal performance of cables in a conduit system. if the problem is substation exit circuits in an open rural area with a wide area for circuit exits and good soil conditions. Both of these uses generally require small conduits (two-inch minimum diameter is recommended) and are easy to initially install. these secondary circuits must be designed. This situation is often encountered in congested areas such as shopping centers. it is generally preferable to plan on secondary circuits being located in the upper ducts. Small features of duct bank design that are often overlooked are provision for area lighting circuits and future electric utility communication circuits. After all circuits are designed for local service. Of course.0 18.6 212.2 17. Other considerations are the greater mechanical protection afforded lower conduits and the simplified manhole internal arrangement. a conduit system is probably the proper answer for lowest long-term costs. the total system must be designed in light of present and future loads and the circuits required to serve these loads.2 10. If both primary and secondary circuits are located in the same duct run.1 DB-60 11.3 11.2 6. Encased duct will also be needed where cable-pulling tensions are high or bends are in the conduit.9 19. cable installation forces and damage probability must also be considered when choosing the final conduit configuration.0 595.1 should be used to simplify construction. These have lower initial cost and better thermal performance than either direct-buried conduit or concrete-encased conduit systems. Then distribution circuits will be designed to provide primary voltage to all transformers.8 487. Therefore.

the overall cross-sectional area can be calculated with Equation 9. Although the NEC does not legally bind cooperatives.2. and 40 percent maximum fill for three or more cables in a conduit. 7 8 9 4 5 2 6 4 1 5 2 6 3 4 5 6 1 3 1 2 3 Section A-A Duct Size Use 1 5" Primary Loop 2 5" Spare 3 5" Primary Loop 4 2" Area Lighting 5 5" Spare 6 2" Utility Communications Section B-B Duct Size Use 1 5" Primary Loop 2 5" Spare 3 5" Primary Loop 4 5" Secondary 5 5" Secondary 6 5" Secondary 7 2" Area Lighting 8 2" Utility Communications 9 2" Area Lighting Section C-C Duct Size Use 1 5" Primary Loop 2 5" Spare 3 5" Primary Loop 4 2" Area Lighting 5 2" Utility Communications 6 2" Area Lighting 4 1 2 3 1 5 2 6 3 1 2 Section D-D Duct Size Use 1 5" Secondary 2 5" Secondary 3 5" Secondary Section E-E Duct Size Use 1 5" Primary Loop 2 5" Spare 3 5" Primary Loop 4 5" Secondary 5 5" Secondary 6 5" Secondary Section F-F Duct Size Use 1 2" Area Lighting 2 2" Area Lighting FIGURE 9. Tables 9. the preferred location of communication circuits is the top center conduit. or 34. If other than standard specifications are used for cable. insulation.7 through 9. D D To Remote Loads To Local Loads FIGURE 9. and maximum areas of fill for various sizes of conduit are shown in Table 9. it is still an excellent standard and application guide on conduit fill. control. The listed cables have standard thickness of conductor shield. DETERMINATION OF CONDUIT SIZES FOR CABLE INSTALLATION An important step in analyzing the duct bank system is to examine the size and number of cables required and to select the appropriate conduit size. which are 53 percent maximum fill for one cable in a conduit.6. and standard numbers and size of concentric neutral wires in accordance with ICEA specifications. For the analysis of conduit fill. The tables are based on the maximum fill requirements of the NEC. especially in areas where concrete-encased ducts are installed or high load density exists. inside diameters. 25-. or if other than stranded or solid conductor is used. The trade sizes. Section 32 of the NESC has information on the allowable location of communication ducts and circuits.5-kV power cable can be calculated with Equation 9. or metering associated with electric distribution.11 all have ICEA Class B concentric stranded conductors.15 list the minimum size of conduit necessary to accommodate certain numbers and sizes of underground power and secondary cables. The cables shown in Tables 9. Such circuits might be used for alarm. . 31 percent maximum fill for two cables in a conduit. For 600-volt secondary cable.3: Typical Arrangements for System in Figure 9. the overall cross-sectional area of 15-. Making provisions for these circuits is recommended. insulation shield. the National Electrical Code (NEC) is an excellent source that has been tried and tested countless times. and jacket. If other conditions allow. unless an “S” indicating solid conductor appears beside the conductor AWG size.2: Typical Duct Line and Manhole Arrangement.1.2.Conduit System De s i gn – 3 1 9 9 To Area Lighting F A A E E D Secondary Duct To Area Lighting F B C Primary Duct F F Manhole Manhole Primary & Secondary Ducts B Secondary Duct C D Transformer Location cooperative only.12 through 9.

50 inches over the concentric neutral • 0.04 1. in.548 4.75 10.3 2 0 – Se c t io n 9 9 TABLE 9.) 1.075 0. in.73 20.1: Shielded Concentric Neutral Cable Diameters.060 0.9: Concentric Neutral Thickness—Aluminum Cables.09 8. Diameter = C + 2CS + A + 2I + 0.) 2.5-kV cables with conductor larger than #4/0 • 0.92 2.068 3.01 28.024 TABLE 9.6: Conduit Fill.067 2.500 .501–2.469 3.1144 0.1285 ALUMINUM Conductor (AWG or MCM) Through #1/0 #2/0.31 2 Cables Area x 31% (sq.29 3.96 3 Cables Area x 40% (sq.7: Conductor Shield Thickness.89 Equation 9.79 7.047 6.000 1.016 0. Full Neutral 1/3 Neutral Neutral Wire Size (AWG) #14 #12 #10 #9 #8 Thickness (in.120 inches for conductors larger than 1.60 15.001 and greater * Diameter over insulation = C + 2CS + A + 2I Insulation Shield (in.000 inches for all other cable constructions I = Insulation wall thickness IS = Insulation shield thickness (See Table 9.080 inches for conductors through 1.065 1 Cable Area x 53% (sq.06 3.34 1.8) N = Thickness of concentric neutral wires J = Thickness of outer jacket: • 0.24 6.) 3.030 + 2IS + 2N + 2J where: C = Diameter of the conductor CS = Thickness of the conductor shield (see Table 9.105 TABLE 9.0808 0.20 8.0641 0.010 inches for 25-kV and 34.39 9.000 2.026 5.54 3.000 1.000 1.89 12. Inside Diameter (in.250–